July Rent Payments Reach 88 Percent

NMHC’s latest report comes shortly before additional unemployment benefits and several eviction moratoriums are set to expire.

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Across the U.S., 87.6 percent of renters made full or partial rent payments by July 13, according to the latest report from the National Multifamily Housing Council.

The figure reflects a more than 10 percent increase in rents paid so far this month: Last week’s report from NMHC found that 77.4 percent of renters had made full or partial payments by July 5. The share of payments is a slight decrease from the same time period last month and the same time period last year.

The payment data was pulled from 11.4 million professionally managed, market-rate rental units across the country that vary widely by size, type and average rental price. This week’s report is the latest in the series from the NMHC Rent Payment Tracker, an initiative that partners with industry firms Entrata, MRI Software, RealPage, ResMan and Yardi.

The report does not reflect payment data for smaller landlords and affordable and subsidized housing properties across the country, as NMHC has previously pointed out.

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The figures come four months after cities and state enacted far-reaching lockdown orders that shuttered offices, businesses and schools and two weeks before additional unemployment benefits and several eviction moratoriums are set to expire.

Other reports on rental payments across the country have produced differing results. A survey by the apartment rental listings website Apartment List found that 32 percent of renters did not make their housing payment in full and on-time. Another report found that rent payments have steadily declined since the beginning of the pandemic and renters with online rent payment options were more likely to pay.

“The government support, including unemployment benefits, that has proven so important to so many apartment residents expires at the end of the month,” said NMHC President Doug Bibby in prepared remarks. “Lawmakers need to continue to protect the individuals and families that call an apartment home. If action isn’t taken now we risk making the nation’s housing affordability challenges far worse, rolling back the initial economic recovery and putting tens of millions at risk of greater health and financial distress.”

The multifamily industry has pushed for more federal relief for renters for months. The House passed the latest bill related to the coronavirus pandemic, the HEROES Act, on May 15. It included $100 billion in rent relief but has so far failed to gain any steam in the Senate.

Researchers from the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University have estimated that rental assistance for Americans with at-risk wages—including those in services, retail, recreation, transportation and travel, and oil extraction—could range anywhere from $274 million up to $7.5 billion.

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