Coronavirus: Bay Area residents affected by COVID-19 crisis concerned about making April rent

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Because of the coronavirus pandemic, there is extreme anxiety throughout most communities in the Bay Area for those who don't have income flowing in right now and don't know how they will meet their basic needs including rent.

RELATED: Eviction moratoriums around the Bay Area during coronavirus pandemic: Ordinances city by city

One Millbrae family is reeling from the closure of their foot massage salon and spa, which is not considered an essential business and cannot remain open.

"The rent for the commercial space for the business that's $3,000 to $4,000 a month, a huge amount, as well as my student loans. There's a bunch of expenses catching up and it's hard when you don't have a job," said Diana Zhao.

Cary Gold is with the Eviction Defense Collaborative. She said, "There are people who have said I can scrape together my April rent you know with a little savings, but once I do that then there's no way I can do May rent. "

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Oakland residents Melvin and Veronica Perry are both unemployed and with an 8year-old and 2-year-old are terrified of what is next.

"It's now a point where you are making a decision between food and learning and development or just paying the rent to appease your landlord," said Perry.

Krista Gulbransen with the Berkeley Property Owners Association said, "Honestly, I think it's a ripple effect for both tenants and landlords. It's a case where one domino falls, like tenants' inability to pay rent, and it goes right into the owners' ability to pay their own expenses. "

Civic leaders are acknowledging the extreme anxiety in their communities and promise relief.

"Don't worry, this is not the last thing that will be done to help families weather the storm. This eviction moratorium is one piece of a much larger puzzle," said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.

For now, all tenants can do is give their landlord a letter explaining how the impact of COVID-19 is preventing them from paying their rent. Many say the hardest part is not knowing when this is going to end.

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