Tips for paying rent and mortgages amid COVID-19 pandemic

Coronavirus

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – The latest numbers shows unemployment tripled in Mississippi since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with 15% of Mississippians without jobs.

Governor Tate Reeves lifted the moratorium of rent evictions as of June 1, 2020, leaving thousands to wonder how they’re going to pay their bills.

“Some of them still haven’t received unemployment. Some are getting unemployment, but what happens when unemployment runs out. What happens?” said Chayah Yisrael. She’s a foreclosure prevention counselor at the Mississippi Center for Legal Services Corporation.

Officials at the center said they help connect people in 43 counties with legal help. They can help with evictions, mortgage issues, debt collection and benefits.

“You can contact any of the community action agencies within your area to see if they can assist with any funding they may have available for maybe mortgages or rent, utilities, like light and gas,” explained Yisrael.

The center expects more people to call for help and that the law is constantly changing. They’re asking people to do their research on assistance now.

“If you’re able to pay your rent, please do so. If you’re not able to pay your full rent, talk to your landlord and try to negotiate some type of payment plan that will allow you to avoid an eviction action,” said Sam Buchanan, who is the executive director of the center.

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