AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) — Last October, Samantha Pate and Andrew Martinez took a photo to mark the day they got their new apartment.
On Saturday, one day before the nationwide eviction moratorium ends, their family of four, could be giving those keys back and out in the elements.
“We might be evicted,” the couple said.
They say they’re struggling to keep up with rent. “Eight months, about $8000,” they said.
They said they’ve been working or looking for work, but hours or lack of a babysitter, challenges any of us might relate to, just keep the income from coming in.
“Right now I do Instacart because I can take my kids with me. I was doing Veho, which is delivering HelloFresh packages,” Pate said.
They took video of a camping trip with friends recently from land they’re buying near Fairplay. “This is not camping for us, this is going to be a way of life,” Martinez said. That same land could be where they’re going to live if they’re evicted.
“We’re going to go live on a homestead land that we bought intentions for like building a better life for ourselves later on,” Martinez said.
What was their plan for the future might become their only choice. “Be forced to stay in a couple of tents and wood burning stove to keep warm for winter,” Martinez said.
They said they’ve sold what they don’t need: TVs, electronics, the like to buy the essentials, like a water tank.
“Collect your own rainwater, to try and filter out for bathing and rinsing your hands,” Martinez said.
“We bought a portable, compostable toilet with a privacy tent, a canopy, another tent,” Pate said.
They’re planning to stay Sunday because they learned deputies only evict during the work week after receiving eviction notices telling them to pay or leave.
“It’s like a free day,” Martinez said.
Governor Jared Polis extended the eviction moratorium in Colorado for anyone who has applied for rental assistance.
Under that extension, landlords may not evict tenants who can show they’re waiting for rental aid.