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How Far Will the $1,200 Stimulus Check Go for Owners and Renters?

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How Far Will the $1,200 Stimulus Check Go for Owners and Renters?


April 15, 2020
Woman counting cash money
By kerkezz

A much-needed $1,200 will be hitting qualifying Americans’ bank accounts pretty soon, thanks to the Cares Act, a stimulus bill directing the country’s coronavirus relief. For some, that check will cover almost everything they need for the month. For others in cities with higher costs of living, it will not even be enough for rent. Redfin analyzed all 50 states and the 50 largest metro areas to see how far that check will go in terms of covering rent or mortgage payments. See how much the check will cover for the average family in your city or state.

The White House recently signed into law a $2 trillion economic relief package to aid businesses and individuals impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The stimulus bill, known as the CARES Act, will provide checks for as much as $1,200 to millions of Americans, many of whom will use the money to pay their mortgages or rent. It supplements other measures taken by the federal government, including a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions for many homeowners and renters, as well as a mortgage forbearance program.

More than three-quarters of U.S. renters could pay one month’s worth of housing expenses with $1,200, compared with nearly half of homeowners, according to data compiled by Redfin. Of course, the stimulus checks will only go so far, as many Americans have lost their jobs as a result of the pandemic and are unsure when they will be able to get back to work.

Below is a list of the 50 largest metropolitan areas, ranked by the percentage of homeowners who could cover most or all of their one-month mortgage payment, plus basic utility costs, with $1,200. Some households will receive more than one check, so we also calculated the share of homeowners in each metro who could pay for most or all of a one-month mortgage payment and utilities with two checks, or $2,400. Scroll down to see the same analysis for renters.

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