Renters are the most behind on payments in these 10 states

South Dakota has the highest percentage of tenants in arrears, at 26%, according to a new study. Pictured is Mount Rushmore National Monument.

Photo by Mike Kline (notkalvin)

Renters across the United States are feeling the effects of soaring inflation, rising housing prices and the end of the nationwide ban on evictions.

Some 15% of U.S. households, about 6 million, are behind on rent this fall, according to a recent report from MyEListing.com, a commercial real estate website.

Renters in South Dakota, Alabama and New Jersey are having the hardest time paying, according to the report, based on an analysis of US Census Bureau data, and Americans between the ages of 40 and 54 have the most of difficulties.

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Despite signs of a market slowdown, families still paid 12.6% more for single-family rentals in July compared to the previous month, according to a recent report from CoreLogic.

These inflated costs, along with higher daily expenses, have strained the budgets of many Americans, with 20% or more renters in arrears in some states, according to the MyEListing.com report.

Here’s where renters have the most difficulty:

States with the most overdue tenants

  1. South Dakota (26%)
  2. Alabama (25%)
  3. New Jersey (24%)
  4. South Carolina (22%)
  5. Connecticut (21%)
  6. Delaware (20%)
  7. Arkansas (20%)
  8. Kentucky (20%)
  9. Louisiana (20%)
  10. New York (19%)

The rise in rental prices could continue until 2023

Many markets are seeing rental prices drop, according to a September rent report from Zumper, based on the 100 largest U.S. cities. More than half of the cities in the report saw month-over-month declines in the median price of one-bedroom rent.

Yet despite these signs of moderation, the national median rent continues to rise.

Soaring house prices have pushed up rent prices, which have been a major part of inflation since late 2021, according to a report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

And rental price growth could continue in 2023, with year-on-year rent inflation expected to rise from 5.8% in June 2022 to 8.4% in May 2023, according to the report.

How to save as rental prices rise

If you’re considering lowering your rent, it’s essential to “study the local market” so you’re prepared and can negotiate, said Zumper spokeswoman Crystal Chen.

“Winter is the best time to strike a deal,” she said. “That’s when demand is at its lowest and landlords want to fill vacancies before the holidays.”

You can find discounted rates if you can wait until then, she added, and you can watch for rental promotions in the meantime.

Winter is the best time to get a bargain.

Crystal Chen

Zumper Spokesperson

“Property managers of new buildings usually try to fill many apartments at once,” Chen said. “Some will offer perks like six weeks free rent or reduced security deposits.”

It is also worth asking for a lower rent for a longer term lease. “You might not get a discount, but it doesn’t hurt to ask,” she said.