The coronavirus shutdown resulted in the loss of more than 22 million American jobs in March and April, leaving an unemployment rate of 14.7 percent. As some states began to reopen in May, the rate dropped to 13.3 percent, still a far cry from 4.4 percent in March.
Naturally, a lot of people have had trouble making on-time rent or mortgage payments, even after the implementation of federal and local programs designed to help. Monthly surveys by Apartment List help us understand just how many. The surveys, from April, May and June, each reflect the answers of 4,000 respondents who collectively matched the gender and age distribution of the United States.
By the end of the first week of May, 22 percent of respondents had made no monthly housing payment, up from 12 percent in April, according to the surveys. In June, there was a small improvement, with 19 percent making no payments. Partial payments followed a similar pattern, as detailed in this week’s chart. The National Multifamily Housing Council, which tracks rent payments from about 11.5 million U.S. households, corroborated the survey’s results for rentals. While most tenants ultimately did make a payment by the end of each month, those who made late payments were more likely to miss the next payment.
The Apartment List survey also reported a higher level of concern about losing a home among those in lower income brackets, those who were younger, and first-time buyers.
With unemployment benefits and moratoriums on foreclosures and evictions eventually expiring, not to mention a potential second wave of the virus, the months ahead could be rocky. The Federal Reserve has not been particularly optimistic: Its recent projection puts unemployment at 9.3 by the end of 2020, and 5.5 percent by 2022.