CoronavirusReal Estate

The number of New Yorkers who can’t pay rent this month has doubled

That's more than 36% of all apartment dwellers in the Big Apple

It’s the first of June, and rent is due. Nearly three months into the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are struggling to make rent payments.

Last month, 80.2% of apartment households still managed to make a full or partial rent payment by May 6, according to The National Multifamily Housing Council’s Rent Payment Tracker for April.

Now, 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.

This is a combination of three groups – respondents who cannot pay June 1, those who haven’t been able to pay since May, and those who haven’t been able to pay rent since April, PropertyNest said.

Last month’s survey from PropertyNest showed that 17.9% of respondents would not be able to make rent payments due on May 1.

As another 2.1 million Americans filed jobless claims a few weeks ago, the amount of jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic has risen to 40 million, making it harder for many to pay rent.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. had an unemployment rate of 14.7% in May.

More New York renters also said they worked out a deal with their landlords this month: 5.6% of respondents said that they worked out a payment plan with their landlord last month, compared to 9.5% this month.

Overall, 65.9% of respondents said they will struggle to pay the rent for June. This number includes everyone who is not able to make their rent, those using stimulus or unemployment checks to pay, those borrowing money and those who worked out a payment plan with their landlords. This is an increase of 48% from last month’s survey.

In fact, Avail said that the total number of incomplete rent payments rose 93% between March and May.

The number of people who cannot pay rent roughly translates to about 24% of New Yorkers since this data is collected purely from the rental market, PropertyNest said. This is an increase of 106% – 36.9% of renters compared to last month’s 17.9% of renters – who said they could not make a rent payment.

Meanwhile, Zumper said that all of the top 10 priciest cities either had flat or declining rents.

As a result of the pandemic, demand for apartments has been away from the most expensive cities, as more companies move into remote work and workers can be flexible as to where they reside.

Zumper said that the most expensive city in the U.S. had the largest year-over-year drop since it began tracking in 2015.

San Francisco’s one-bedroom rent is down 9.2% since this time last year to $3,360, which is also the lowest price point it’s been since March 2017, Zumper said.

Likewise, the three next most expensive markets, New York City; Boston; and San Jose; all had negative year-over-year changes for their respective one-bedroom rents as well.

Overall, one-bedroom rent dropped by 0.2% last month, to $1,217, while two-bedrooms were flat at $1,473. On a year-to-date basis, both one- and two-bedroom rents are down by 0.5%.

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