Although COVID-19 has led to an economic scare in the United States, recent data shows eviction and unemployment rates have started to decrease in Glendale, dropping at a more rapid pace than most Arizona cities due to government support.
Within the metropolitan area of Phoenix, Mesa, Glendale and Scottsdale, the unemployment dropped from 12.5% in April to just 6.3% in September, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average unemployment rate from 2010 to 2020 for the month of September is 6.1% for the Phoenix metropolitan area.
In Glendale, September’s unemployment rate of 6.3% was just 0.1% above the average unemployment rate of 6.2% over the past 11 years.
Before COVID-19, a census tract reported by New America found that tracts within Glendale had some of the highest rates of eviction within Arizona from 2014 to 2018. The census tract with the highest eviction rate from 2014 to 2018 was located between Downtown Phoenix and Glendale with an eviction rate of over 32%, according to New America.
But Glendale is now at an all-time low with eviction rates, largely due to government support from the CARES Act. Glendale received $29 million in CARES funding—and the CARES Act put strict limitations on landlords being able to evict their tenants due to factors like becoming unemployed.
While the CARES Act halted many tenants from getting evicted, indirectly contributing to a drop in the amount of unsheltered homeless people residing in Glendale, there is debate on whether too much was done to protect tenants.
“These measures were designed to help tenants in need, and surely did so, but were poorly written and executed,” said Chad Walton, eviction attorney for the Kick’em Out Quick law firm in Glendale. “I doubt there will ever be statistical data to show the number of tenants who benefited and actually qualified for protection versus the tenants that claimed protection in order to secure free housing for several months.”
Glendale City Council recently approved the Property Owners Preservation program, a new program created to aid tenants and property owners negatively affected by the impacts of COVID-19. The program gives federal rental assistance to landlords on behalf of their tenants.
“The city recognizes many tenants may not be aware of or fully understand how to apply for rental assistance funds,” said Jay Crandall, public information officer for Glendale. “By allowing landlords to apply on behalf of tenants, this program removes one obstacle for families who may have lost jobs or seen wages cut during the pandemic, while also preserving rental income for property owners.”
As eviction and unemployment rates continue to drop, there are still tenants in Glendale suffering financially.
Residential rental property owners in Glendale were able to apply for assistance of up to $12,000 per rental unit on behalf of tenants being negatively affected by COVID-19.
For more information or to apply, visit glendaleaz.com/pop.