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Covid-19: How To Negotiate Rent Relief During a Pandemic + Email Template

Covid-19: How To Negotiate Rent Relief During a Pandemic + Email Template

How To Negotiate Rent Relief for COVID-19 email template featured by top Seattle lifestyle blogger, Whit Wanders

When as I was laid off due to Covid-19 I had to reassess my budget & savings. Making hard choices when your income gets cut off is a tough but necessary requirement. Keep reading to find out what I decided to do and what YOU can do too.

I had to look at whether keeping my apartment and paying rent made economic sense during a pandemic.  I ran the numbers to compare staying in my apartment or paying for a storage unit and it was a no brainer.

I could have gone into my savings and stayed in my apartment, but the last thing you want is to go into debt during a pandemic. I am very lucky to have a family to fall back on for support. But I know not everyone is as fortunate to have that as an option.

If you are in need of rent relief assistance you can look for rent assistance programs in your area that may help fill the gaps with income. But make sure to check your lease first and some lease agreement prohibits these types of programs.

If you are feeling the financial stress of Covid-19 and trying to figure out what-to-do about your apartment or rent relief – follow these 3 steps and the email templates below:


How to Negotiate Rent Relief:

Be Proactive In Your Communication:

Reach out and alert your landlord or apartment management as soon as you become concerned your job is in jeopardy. It’s better to communicate and be upfront about the situation so you have more time to work with your landlord on a solution.

Provide Documentation

Provide written evidence of your situation (layoff notice, proof of filing for unemployment, proof of applying for PPP funds) so that your landlord can understand your situation and request.

Request A Reduced Rate or Rent Deferral

If you want to stay in your current apartment, try asking for a deferred payment plan or offer to pay a portion of your rent. You could ask to defer your rent entirely for a predetermined period and then pay back a percentage of the amount due over a defined period of time.





Payment Plan for a Reduced Rate Template

Dear  [Apartment Management Name],

In May I was laid off/furloughed from my job. My income has been reduced from $[previous income] to $[current income]. As a result I will be unable to pay June rent and I am reaching out to see if I could set up a reduced payment plan or rent deferral related to the COVID-19 disruptions.

I expect to be able to resume rental payments as soon as I start receiving unemployment benefits or I am able to find another job. As you may be aware, the unemployment application process is taking longer because of all the filings happening due to COVID-19.


Thank you for your consideration.





Negotiate Out of Your Lease Template

Dear  [Apartment Management Name],

In May I was laid off due to Covid-19. My income has been reduced and my current industry is seeing mass unemployment. As a result I will need to negotiate out of my current lease agreement.

Please take this as my 30-days notifications that I will be moving out of my unit. I will look to pro-rate the days I have left in the existing month and plan to vacant by XXX date.


Thank you for your consideration.



**PLEASE NOTE – Often times if you break your lease or negotiate out of your lease agreement there can be a fee associated. This was waived in my case due to WA State Covid-19 protection orders. Check the State you live in to see if they have similar protections.



These rental protections were enacted in March and have been extended through June 4th.

  • Prohibits enforcement of agreements to vacate:
  • Prohibits a landlord from requiring a non-paying tenant to move to a lesser unit, and prevents landlords from threatening to take action against tenants.
  • Prohibits landlords from assessing or threatening to assess late fees or other charges for non-payment.
  • Prohibits a landlord from assessing (or threatening to assess) rent for housing/parcel where the tenant’s access or use was prevented as a result of COVID.


With the coronavirus pandemic continuing, laws and rules surrounding landlords, renters, and eviction moratoriums will continue to change. Make sure to keep an eye on any updates in your State to protect yourself!

Do not feel embarrassed or scared to reach out and ask for rent relief. Starting the conversation with your landlord is the first step!

Make sure you are open, honest, and provide your documentation for their records. Good Luck!



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