A Year in Review: Housing Instability Trends for Hoosier Families and Counties Most Affected by COVID-19
Indiana Institute for Working Families, Indiana Youth Institute, Prosperity Indiana
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated a pre-existing housing stability crisis in Indiana, with effects particularly concentrated among renter households, families with children, Black and brown Hoosiers, and low-income households. Throughout the first year of the pandemic, these Hoosier households were most likely to be affected by job and income loss and least likely to be able to stay current on housing payments. Therefore, they were most at risk of eviction or foreclosure.
After a year of economic disruptions, Indiana has experienced over 41,000 eviction filings at an average rate over 750 per week, despite two eviction moratoria and two rounds of federally-funded emergency rental assistance. With the addition of a new state law that increases eviction powers and reduces local control over landlord-tenant relations, nearly one third of the state’s counties are now above pre-pandemic eviction filing rates, with the highest increases concentrated in Indiana’s smaller and more rural counties.
This joint policy brief was produced in partnership by the Indiana Institute for Working Families, Indiana Youth Institute, and Prosperity Indiana. The report considers data from the weekly U.S. Census Household Pulse Survey, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s Unemployment Claims Monitor, and EvictionLab’s Eviction Tracking System to analyze the economic and social demographics and geographies of COVID-19 housing instability. Recognizing the significant federal resources becoming available to address COVID-related housing instability for renters concurrently with state and federal law and policies making eviction an increasingly available option for landlords, the brief also provides policy recommendations designed to inform Indiana’s state and federal policymakers regarding measures needed to rebuild housing stability and move towards long-term housing security.