COVID-19 Response: Arlington Letter to Multi-Family Landlords

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March 18, 2020

COVID 19 Response: Arlington Letter to Multi-Family Landlords

See below for a letter from County Board Chair Libby Garvey. See an English PDF version here. A Spanish translation will available soon here.


Dear Arlington County Property Owner and/or Manager:


As a community that cares about and supports all of its residents, we are reaching out to multifamily housing providers to ask for your help in maintaining housing stability in Arlington County.  Particularly for households who may be the most impacted by the economic insecurity caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), it is critical that we work together to ensure that they have a safe and stable housing situation. 


We appreciate all you are doing to keep tenants of your properties safe as we navigate the pandemic together.  With this in mind, we ask that you consider now what you can do to ease burdens for tenants who may have difficulty paying their rent in the coming months because of illness or financial hardship related to ongoing business disruptions and closures.

Specifically, to mitigate housing insecurity related to COVID-19 and its anticipated impacts, the County requests that Arlington multifamily rental properties voluntarily take the following actions regarding tenants who are current on their rent:

  • Ask tenants who will not be able to pay their April or May rent on time to submit a written request for relief which includes a general description of their hardship or household situation.

  • Offer an installment payment plan to those who seek relief that allows tenants who will miss April or May rent an opportunity to make up the amount over the next twelve months, with no fees or penalties.

  • Waive late fees and/or penalties for those paying April or May rent partially, or in increments, at any time(s) during the month, as they are able.

  • Do not file eviction proceedings against any tenant who is late paying April or May rent.  Currently, the General District Court has removed all civil cases – except for protective orders – from the docket which were scheduled to be heard from March 17th through April 6th, including eviction cases (unlawful detainers).  This information was shared in an Order for Docket Management effective March 16, 2020.

  • Refer tenants who may be struggling to Arlington County’s Department of Human Services for emergency assistance at 703-228-1350.

  • As of now, Arlington County’s housing programs are continuing operations and rental subsidy programs (e.g., Housing Grants, Permanent Supportive Housing, and Housing Choice Vouchers) should experience no disruption that would impact payments to housing providers. Further, the County is exploring options for providing financial support to housing providers who experience hardship as a result of uncollected rents and will provide further information as resources are identified.

For the latest information about the virus and resources that the County and others are providing locally, please consult our website at


Thank you for considering this request.  We understand that these measures may create financial challenges for your property and appreciate your commitment to supporting Arlington residents as we address this health crisis in our community. 




Libby Garvey, Chair

Arlington County Board