April Rent Payments Hit 84 Percent

NMHC’s latest analysis found that a large majority of renters made full or partial payments by April 12.

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Nearly 85 percent of renters in the U.S. have paid full or partial rent, according to just-released data from the National Multifamily Housing Council. The figure reflects a 15 percent increase from data released April 5.

The report, which pulled data from 11.5 million apartments units across the country, found that by April 12, 84 percent of renter households had made either full or partial rent payments. Looking at historical numbers, NMHC found that 90 percent of renters made full or partial payments from April 1, 2019 to April 12, 2019, while 91 percent of renters made payments between March 1 to March 12, 2020.

Compared to the same time last month, the numbers show a payment rate of 93 percent. According to NMHC, the data was culled from market-rate rental properties that vary widely by size, type and average rental price.

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The data is part of the newly launched NMHC Rent Payment Tracker, an initiative that partners with industry firms Entrata, MRI Software, RealPage, ResMan and Yardi. NMHC will release updated data from the tracker once a week for the length of COVID-19 outbreak.

Last week’s report, the first in the series, found that 69 percent of renters made their rent payment by April 5, reflecting a 12 percent decrease in those who had paid the month prior and a 13 percent decrease from the same time last year. The data was culled from five industry firms and reflects more than 13.4 million units across the country.

NMHC President Doug Bibby said in prepared remarks that while the organization is pleased with the latest rent payment figures, rising unemployment numbers and reported delays in assistance could impact rent payments in May.

“It is our hope that, as residents begin receiving the direct payments and the enhanced unemployment benefits the federal government passed, we will continue to see improvements in rent payments,” said Bibby.

NMHC and other groups within the multifamily industry continue to call for more action from legislators and the federal government to assist both owners and renters. In a joint announcement last week, NAA and NMHC called for:

  • Creating an Emergency Rental Assistance Program to help renters who don’t currently receive federal rental subsidies but are now struggling to cover housing costs because of the coronavirus crisis;
  • Align the timelines of mortgage forbearance and eviction provisions;
  • Expand the SBA Paycheck Protection Program to include multifamily and student housing firms so they can protect their employees and operations;
  • Provide critical tax relief for multifamily property owners;
  • Enact critical infrastructure programs to support economic recovery.

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