Q1 Report - Overview - Eviction in Dane County

According to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, there are 88,450 rental units in Dane County. Of the 1,629 eviction filings in 2022, 1,429 (88%) were for nonpayment of rent, 56 (3%) were for remaining in the rental unit after the expiration date of the rental agreement (commonly referred to as “holding over”), and the remaining 144 (9%) filings were for other breeches of the rental agreement.

The COVID-19 pandemic has fueled an ongoing rental housing crisis in Dane County. According to the 2019 Dane County Housing Needs Assessment, there were 13,050 extremely-cost-burdened (defined as paying 50% or more of their income for housing costs) renter households in 2015 (the most recent data available). According to the same report, the gap in affordable rental units for Dane County is 10,812 units.

Without programs like the EDDP, tenant households face a massive imbalance of power when it comes to legal representation in eviction proceedings. Landlords have attorneys appearing on their behalf in nearly half of all eviction actions and have even greater access to legal resources outside of appearances in court. In 2022, tenant households were represented in just 0.6% of all eviction actions by non-partners of the EDDP. Our partners were able to provide legal services (both in court and outside of court) in 29%* of all eviction actions.

*This includes services where tenants received legal advice in advance of a hearing, but not representation in court. This figure also includes services where assistance was provided in filing a motion to redact records from an eviction filing.

2022 Evictions by the Numbers

  • 1,629 eviction filings as of December 1st, 2022 involving ~1,500 renter households
  • 579 landlord plaintiffs filing eviction actions in Dane County with the average landlord filing 4.13 cases
  • Landlords were represented by an attorney in 711 (44%) of all filings
  • Tenants were represented by an attorney in 432 (27%) of all filings
  • EDDP provided legal services (both in-court and before) in 478 (29%) filings on behalf of renter households