Daily Management Review

New Yorkers owe more than $1B in rent due to COVID-19 pandemic


New Yorkers renting flats in the city have owed more than $1 billion in rent since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. This was reported by The Wall Street Journal, citing a study conducted by the group Community Housing Improvement Program (CHIP).

The study focused on New York City buildings that are subject to certain city rent laws. Such buildings account for about half of all flats rented in the city. Based on landlord responses, CHIP concluded that 185,000 households in such flats owed more than two months' rent. The average amount of debt was $6000. 

The amount of rent debt among residents in the rest of New York City's flats is also probably $1 billion or more, CHIP executive director Jay Martin told the WSJ. That means the total debt owed by New York City tenants could exceed $2 billion, the newspaper said. 

Most New Yorkers who have not paid their rent are protected from eviction by federal and local laws, the newspaper notes. Last December, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo extended the eviction moratorium until May. Some landlords, meanwhile, are not paying their mortgages and other obligations because their incomes have fallen and they cannot evict non-payers. When the measures protecting tenants stop working, there could be a surge in the number of evictees, the publication stresses.

Prices asked by landlords in New York City during the pandemic have fallen in many boroughs, but remain high by U.S. standards, the WSJ writes. The median cost of a one-bedroom flat here is $2350, the paper notes, citing data from the website Zumper.

source: wsj.com