Most renters made full or partial rent payments this month, according to the National Multifamily Housing Council’s Rent Payment Tracker. The survey of over 11 million apartment units across the country found 91.3 percent tenants made efforts to pay.
While that’s good news for many landlords, it does represent a slight decrease — 2.1 percent — from July of last year, and is down from 92.2 percent who paid in June 2020.
“The extended unemployment benefits and other government support that have proven critical to keeping apartment residents in their homes expire in just a few days,” said Doug Bibby, NMHC President. “Lawmakers are currently negotiating, but Members of Congress and Trump administration leaders need to understand that unless comprehensive action is taken now to protect the tens of millions of Americans who live in an apartment home, they risk destabilizing the nation’s housing market, undermining the nascent economic recovery, and turning the ongoing health and economic crisis into a housing crisis.”
There is reason to believe an extension of those government benefits will be forthcoming. Although the details are still being hashed out in Congress, it appears additional stimulus funds and extensions on unemployment benefits will be in the mix. That may help turn the tide, as economic data like the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey shows over half of renters across several demographics are suffering job losses or underemployment due to the pandemic.
At the same time, the federal government and several states have announced an extension on eviction moratoriums that will continue into the fall.
Partial payments and installment plans have become a mainstay, but these arrangements also demonstrate tenants’ willingness to prioritize rent payments and the willingness on the part of many landlords to think outside the box.
With evictions on hold or backlogged for many more weeks, landlords may need to consider installment plans and other workarounds to stave off continued income loss while the economy regains its footing.
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Disclaimer: The information provided in this post is not intended to be construed as legal advice, nor should it be considered a substitute for obtaining individual legal counsel or consulting your local, state, federal or provincial tenancy laws.