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June 1 rent payments show stress, with some cities seeing steep declines

While Seattle stabilizes, Los Angeles is hit hard

Rent payments made on June 1 have dipped in some states, while others have shown positive growth, according to a new survey from LeaseLock.

Even though renters haven’t had the time to fully recover from the impact of COVID-19, April and May rent payments held steady while June rent payments shrank, showing the need for rental assistance.

In all, first-day rent payments in June saw a 2 percentage point drop in total rent collected compared to May and April – and a 6 percentage point drop compared to the pre-COVID average, according to the report.

Image courtesy of LeaseLock. Click to enlarge.

The report said that the percent of total rent collected on the first day of June was 10%, after seeing 12% in April, 12% in May and 16% January through March.

Not surprisingly, as the number of people seeking unemployment in the U.S. continues to rise, the number of people reaching out for rental assistance also rises.

While Google Trends searches for “rental assistance” certainly showed a spike at the beginning of the pandemic, there was another, larger, spike for the search term in mid-May, the report revealed.

The pandemic’s economic effects vary according to location, and rental assistance data mirrors those variations. According to PropertyNest, 36.9% of all respondents who live in New York said they do not have the money to pay rent on June 1.

Seattle, however, is seeing stabilization in rent payments, LeaseLock said. “This is likely due to Seattle being one of the first metros hit hard by COVID-19, which triggered a response by operators to devise payment plans for affected renters,” the report said.

Image courtesy of LeaseLock. Click to enlarge.

Dallas also saw rent payment stabilization after seeing some fluctuation, with more renters paying rent on the first of the month in June than in May – 12% of total paid rent on June 1, while 8% paid in total on May 1 and 15% paid in total April 1.

California and Washington both had notably steep drops in renters who paid rent on the first day of the month. California saw a drop from 15% paying rent in total in May to 7% in June, while Washington saw 38% paying rent in total in May and 15% in June.

Detroit, Los Angeles, Denver and Atlanta all had fewer renters paying on June 1 than on May 1.

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