11 Million Households Miss Rent, Mortgage Payment

Roughly 11 million households fell behind on mortgage payments or rent, and 30 million Americans missed at least one student loan payment during the first three months of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a report released Thursday by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The report, created by MBA’s Research Institute for Housing America, found that 5.88 million renters (or 11 percent) missed, delayed or reduced at least one payment, and 5.14 million homeowners missed or deferred at least one mortgage payment.

“RIHA’s study shows that households were largely successful in navigating a difficult economic landscape and continued to make their housing payments during the first three months of the outbreak. In contrast, nearly half of student debt borrowers missed at least one payment,” said Gary V. Engelhardt, Professor of Economics in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. 

The report found:

  • Minority groups were the most likely to miss rent, mortgage, and student debt payments.
  • 10.5 percent of renters missed one payment over the quarter, 4.5 percent missed two payments, and 2.7 percent missed all three payments.
  • 15 percent of renters received permission from their landlord to delay or reduce their monthly payment.
  • 37 percent of this subgroup of renters took up this offer and delayed or reduced a payment.
  • Among those renters who did not receive permission, only 6.7 percent missed a payment.
  • Rental property owners lost as much as $9.1 billion in second-quarter revenue from missed rent payments.

“The stubbornly high rates of new COVID-19 cases and the labor market’s sluggish recovery both present significant challenges for household finances as the country enters the fall,” Engelhardt said. “Particularly for renters, the combination of those who missed a payment – or were offered and did not take it – is substantive enough to suggest real risk to their ability to make upcoming payments.”