Troubleshooters helping arrange Shely tenant's overdue rent

Troubleshooters: overdue Shely rent
Posted at 2:46 PM, Jun 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-11 17:16:41-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — One of the biggest impacts of COVID-19 is the staggering unemployment being left in the wake of the pandemic.

It leads for a growing part of our population to being unable to pay bills and rent on time.

And that could lead to many people being homeless.

A Corpus Christi landlord has asked the Troubleshooters for help getting his tenant to start paying her rent again so he doesn’t have to evict her.

Art Lopez owns this house on Shely Street and rents it out.

In January, Julie Garcia moved in. Her rent is $740 per month.

But then, according to Lopez, she lost her job, and is now three months behind on rent.

By Lopez’s calculations, she now owes him almost $3,000.

He can’t understand why she‘s stopped communicating with him.

“You saw the texts that she got her stimulus check," Lopez said. "And she got her unemployment. And she’s working. And she makes no effort to communicate with me.”

On June 16, Lopez filed for an eviction notice for Garcia.

But according to this order by the Texas Supreme Court, all civil and eviction hearings are on hold until July 25 due to COVID-19 concerns.

Judge Henry Santana will hear those cases in his court.

“And that could change. As of right now, but it looks like if we’re approved by then, we hope to be, certainly that would take effect, unless the Supreme Court sends down a new order.”

The Troubleshooters spoke with Julie Garcia.

She says she’s working again and has her phone turned back on.

She says she's called Lopez to set up a payment plan.

Lopez says the rent helps pay for property taxes, insurance, and windstorm insurance on this property.

He doesn’t want to evict Garcia, and it sounds like he won’t have to.