Free Rent! Landlords Offering More Concessions

Landlords across the country are offering more perks to attract would-be renters as the rental market has softened considerably in the last few months, according to an analysis released Tuesday by Zillow. In July, 30.4 percent of rental listings on Zillow offered some sort of concession – up from 16.2 percent in February and just 12.5 percent in July 2019. At the same time, growth in rent costs has slowed from 3.9 percent to 1.2 percent over the same period. “Before the pandemic, rent growth was accelerating and the nation was seeing concessions dwindle. That trend reversed sharply after the pandemic hit in February,” Zillow economist Joshua Clark said. “In a softer rental market, landlords are trying to push the right…

Democrats Call Trump’s Housing Order An ‘Illusion’

President Trump issued an executive order over the weekend directing various federal agencies to identify ways to prevent evictions and foreclosures during the coronavirus pandemic – though the order itself did not provide those protections. “My Administration, to the extent reasonably necessary to prevent the further spread of COVID-19, will take all lawful measures to prevent residential evictions and foreclosures resulting from financial hardships caused by COVID-19,” Trump wrote in the order. Specifically, the order calls for the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Director of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to consider whether implementing a ban on evictions for failure to pay rent is “reasonably necessary to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 from one State or…

FHFA Announces New Renter Protections

Multifamily property owners whose mortgages are backed by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae must inform tenants in writing about rent and eviction protections if they enter into a new or modified forbearance agreement, The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Thursday. While in forbearance due to economic challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic, property owners must agree not to evict tenants solely for not paying rent. “Landlords in forbearance must notify their tenants that they cannot be evicted for nonpayment of rent due to the pandemic,” FHFA Director Mark Calabria said. “If tenants are able to pay their rent, they should continue to do so.”  Other protections previously announced include: Giving tenants at least a 30-day notice to vacate;Not charging tenants…

More Renters Not Making Payments

More than 1 in 5 renters did not pay rent during the first week in July – the highest for any month since the coronavirus pandemic started in March in the United States, according to a report released Wednesday by Zillow. The share of apartments households that did not pay any rent was 22.6 percent in the first week of July – up from 19.2 percent the first week of June. By July 13, the percentage who hadn’t paid fell to 12.4 percent – 2.5 percentage points higher than the same period last year. “The rental market has been more affected by the coronavirus pandemic than the for-sale side appears to have been. The steady climb of the past few…