When landlords default on risky subprime loans, renters are the ones left out in the cold, the New York Times reports. Thousands of renters have lost their homes, usually little suspecting they were living on precariously-financed ground. “Renters are collateral damage in the mortgage crisis,” said one lawyer. In some states, more than 20% of 2007 foreclosures weren’t owner-occupied.
Help could be on the way. The House recently passed a bill that would give renters six months to vacate after a foreclosure. The lending industry opposes the measure–“Banks don’t want to be landlords,” explained one mortgage exec. Evicted renters disagree. “I should have rights like everybody else,” said one. “I paid my rent. That should entitle me to some security, right?”