Maricopa County evictions hit record high in October 2023

By Greg Hahne
Associated Press
Published: Saturday, November 4, 2023 - 6:05am
Updated: Saturday, November 4, 2023 - 1:59pm

eviction notice
Kameleon007/Getty Images
Eviction notice hanging on a door.

Maricopa County saw more eviction filings in October than any other month since the beginning of this century.

Landlords filed 7,948 complaints last month.

That’s about 50 more than the previous record, set in August 2005.

Scott Davis with Maricopa County Justice Courts says evictions are averted in about one-third of filings, as tenants and landlords reach deals.

Maricopa County continues to be one of the fastest growing regions in the country. About 57,000 new residents moved here between July 2021 and July 2022.

But the housing crunch is a statewide issue. The Arizona Department of Housing has reported a shortage of  270,000 dwelling units. 

Maricopa County does offer emergency rental assistance and legal help for some qualifying tenants.

Struggling with monthly housing costs

eviction notice on a door
Getty Images

A housing supply committee of government officials and housing specialists found last year that it takes too long to build new housing in Arizona and that the current local zoning regulations create barriers to new development.

With the demand high for housing units, especially affordable ones, rents have soared in recent years, leaving many Arizona residents to struggle with their monthly housing costs. Apartment List, an online marketplace for rental listings, reported this week that although rent prices in Phoenix fell 1% in October, they are up 25.6% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

The median rent in Phoenix is now $1,155 for a one-bedroom unit and $1,397 for a two-bedroom unit, Apartment List reported. The citywide apartment vacancy rate stands at 6.8%, it added.

The Arizona Multihousing Association, which represents several thousand property owners and managers across the state, underscored on Thursday that most landlords work hard to keep residents in their homes.

“We know people are struggling," association president and CEO Courtney Gilstrap LeVinus said in a statement. “When people can’t pay their rent, eviction is typically the last resort. No one wants to see anyone lose their home.”

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