Though legislators are currently paying more attention to homeowners, renters are among the most adversely affected by the foreclosure crisis and the recession.
Nearly 40 percent of families facing eviction due to foreclosure are renters, according to a recent report by the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty and the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
Renters' rights in foreclosure vary by state, so some renters who pay their rent on time may find themselves evicted without notice. Currently, only 17 states require that landlords provide tenants notification of foreclosure.
Washington, D.C., and New Jersey are the only states where renters' tenancy transfers over to the property's new owner.
And many renters who may not be facing eviction through foreclosure are dealing with the rising cost of utilities and rental prices that remain high, even as housing values continue to fall.
As a result, local government housing programs that help struggling homeowners, renters and homeless people have seen sharp increases in request for aid over the past year. The recently passed economic recovery package will provide 1.6 billion dollars in grants to these programs.