Governor Kate Brown issued an executive order titled “Stay Home, Save Lives” on March 23rd.  We have been stuck inside for almost a month now, waiting “patiently” for the pandemic to end and everything to go back to normal. It will be a holiday when we can finally go back to work. 

Knowing that everyone is tired of seeing coronavirus headlines, I will keep this newsletter short and stick to the essentials. I won’t have time to do anymore in between the interruptions from my quarantined family!

Governor Brown’s latest executive order went into effective April 1st. In it, she prohibits terminating residential and non-residential rental agreements for non-payment of rent, filing for evictions, commercial lockouts, or any other steps to terminate a tenancy for non-payment of rent. Governor Brown has also decided to waive all late fees. 

In this executive order, she enacted a penalty for disobeying. A landlord that violated the emergency order could be found guilty of a Class C misdemeanor – punishable by up to thirty (30) days in jail, and/or a fine of up to $1250.

This restriction only applies to non-payment situations. Except for the late-fees, tenants still owe all of their contractual obligations. Evictions can be filed for any offense outside of non-payment of rent, but all first appearances will be reset to a date after June 1st, excluding 24 HR notices and domestic violence. 

How does this affect Empire?

Empire was already working with tenants that are unable to pay rent due to the enforced closing of the economy. On a practical level, this executive order affects us very little. We have already been waiving late fees across the board. There will be no termination notices issued for non-payment. 

The stimulus is starting to come through. There will be a temporary relief for some of our tenants. Aside from that, everything will continue on as it already is.

Stay safe, everyone! And, as always, Happy Landlording!