UPDATE 04/25/2020: Complete our COVID-19 Housing Survey and help us fight to protect Kentuckians from losing their home during the crisis!

For more information about the coronavirus please visit the governor’s coronavirus update page.

Here are the answers to some common questions regarding the governor’s eviction suspension and Healthy at Home Order.

If you believe that you are experiencing illegal discrimination during this pandemic please contact our office.

What is the Healthy At Home Emergency Order?

On March 6, 2020, the Governor declared a state of emergency related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, and on March 25, 2020, suspended evictions in the state during the state of emergency.

Per the order, only life sustaining businesses may stay open, telework is permitted, social distancing and hygiene is required, minimum basic operations of businesses should be in effect, evictions are suspended, additional orders, In-person government services that are not necessary are suspended, prior orders issued remain in effect, and you can still purchase a firearm as long as social distancing is used.

https://governor.ky.gov/covid19


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How does the Healthy at Home Emergency Order eviction suspension affect me?

The purpose of suspending evictions at this time is to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to preserve the health and safety of all Kentuckians, especially the most vulnerable. The Healthy at Home Order does not cancel contracts or mean that the rent is not due. If you have the ability to pay rent, you should pay it. If you do not have the ability to pay rent, try to work something out with your landlord. Lexington Fair Housing Council is available to assist with this, if needed.


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Is the rent due since the governor suspended evictions?

Yes. Your contract is still in effect even if one of the enforcement options is currently on hold. Housing providers and housing seekers/renters are still responsible to their lease contract whether it is in writing or not and whether it is month to month or a term contract (i.e. 12 months, 6 months, etc.)


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I am a renter and I lost my job. I cannot afford to pay rent. What can I do?

Sorry that you find yourself in this circumstance. If your employment loss is due to your place of work being closed because of the government’s stay at home order you can file for unemployment here. Once you have income you should pay your rent. https://kcc.ky.gov/Pages/default.aspx


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I am a tenant. Where can I get rental assistance?

Agencies that may have financial rental assistance:

Mutual Aid Society of Louisville

Mutual Aid Society of Lexington

Mutual Aid Society of Kentucky

United Way

One Louisville Fund

Team Kentucky Fund – The Team Kentucky Fund will be disbursed by Community Action per a press conference held on April 15, 2020. This information will be updated as additional information is made available. Please check the Community Action Kentucky social media for additional updates.

Local Faith-based, arts-based, and community-based organizations


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I need repairs in my home. What can I do?

Contact your housing provider and let them know that you need repairs. If they are essential repairs, your housing provider should make arrangements to complete them.

Before your housing provider arrives, make sure that you have cleaned your home so that any surfaces that the housing provider will need to touch are clean.

Maintain social distance from the housing provider while they work.

Wipe off all surfaces the housing provider touched once the repair is complete.


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I am experiencing domestic violence. How does the Stay at Home order affect me?

Sorry that you are experiencing domestic violence. Please contact your housing provider and explain the situation with them. Kentucky’s domestic violence laws are still in effect with the Healthy at Home order. Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence is a good resource to begin your search. You can find other information about staying safe in your home here. Please contact us if you need more information or details about how to communicate with your housing provider.


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I am a landlord. What can I do?

If you are not getting rent payments from your tenants because of COVID-19 related employment loss you may qualify for a forgivable loan from the Small Business Administration. Click here to begin the application process. https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options

Consider preparing a repayment plan for your tenants.

Be prepared to permit the tenants to remain housed until the Stay at Home order is lifted.


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My tenant needs repairs. What do I do?

Review the work order and determine if this is an essential repair. If this repair is needed to maintain the habitability of the home, make arrangements to make the repair. Take cleaning supplies with you to clean your hands and the object that may need repairs. Clean the items that you will need to touch to make the repair. Clean the items again after the repair is made. Ask the tenant to maintain social distance from you or your personnel during the repair. Once the repair is complete, clean off every surface you touched and wash your hands with soap and warm water as soon as possible.


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My tenant has informed me that a member of the household has COVID-19 and they need repairs. What do I do?

Determine if this repair is needed to maintain habitability of the home. If the repair is necessary, ask the family to move the person(s) with COVID-19 into one room or area of the dwelling and have the rest of the family disinfect the home. The repair person should wear coverings that would prevent the spread and proceed with making the repair being mindful to wipe off everything before touching it and after touching it. Remember to wash your hands before and after beginning the work and disinfect after exiting the home.

You may consider permitting the tenant to make the repair him/herself if it is a small repair or does not impact the habitability of the home.

You may consider permitting the tenant to contract with a licensed professional and reimbursing them for materials or the contractor needed to make the repair.


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I am a landlord. What can I do?

If you are not getting rent payments from your tenants because of COVID-19 related employment loss you may qualify for a forgivable loan from the Small Business Administration. Click here to begin the application process. https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options

Consider preparing a repayment plan for your tenants.

Be prepared to permit the tenants to remain housed until the Stay at Home order is lifted.


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Can I give my tenants notice that they did not pay the rent even though we discussed it?

We discourage this. The governor considers service of notice to vacate to be part of the eviction process. His order suspended evictions. This includes the enforcement of any aspect of the housing transaction that may lead to removal from the home. As of April 14, 2020, Kentucky’s Supreme Court has issued an order that suspends eviction filings until 30 days after May 31, 2020. The earliest that an eviction process may commence is July 1, 2020.

Although this may seem like a good record keeping method, it will only cause your tenants additional stress to receive notice that they have not paid the rent when they have explained why they cannot. Placing a note in the file is sufficient. You should keep a rent log for this purpose.


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I don’t believe my tenants don’t have the rent. What do I do?

The Coronavirus has not voided your contract with your tenant. You may still collect the rent but you must use legal means. This means you will have to wait until the courts reopen to file any forcible detainer (eviction) or small claims actions.

You must wait to serve your tenants with a notice appropriate for laws in your county until after the order is lifted and you may not take any action to cause the habitability of the home to diminish, i.e. disconnecting utilities, changing the locks, refusing to make essential repairs, call the police for trespassing, etc.

Keep good records during this time. There will be tenants who do pay the rent. Ensuring that you do not file a forcible detainer (eviction) against a tenant who did pay their rent will save you and the courts time.


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