Nine in 10 New York venues can’t afford rent

24th September, 2020 by Owen Bellwood

Nearly 90% of bars and restaurants in New York could not pay their full rent in August as indoor dining and drinking remains banned due to Covid-19.

Nine in 10 on-trade venues was unable to pay its full rent in August

Bars and restaurants across New York are currently only permitted to offer outdoor seating or takeaway services. Indoor dining is set to resume in the city at 25% capacity from 30 September.

According to the August Rent Report from the NYC Hospitality Alliance, 87% of bars, restaurants and nightlife venues were unable to pay their full rent in August, rising from 83% in July and 80% in June.

A survey of more than 450 venues in New York, conducted on 11 September, found 34.1% of bars paid no rent in August and 14% said they could not afford 50% of their rent. Just 12.9% of respondents paid their full rent.

According to the survey, 60% of landlords have not waived rent payments during the Covid-19 pandemic and just 38.8% of respondents said landlords had deferred rent payments in relation to Covid-19.

Of the 40% of landlords who did waive rent, fewer than one-third (28.5%) waived more than 50% of the cost, while 43% waived half of the rent.

The survey also found that 90% of venues in the city had been unable to renegotiate their lease as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, said: “Restaurants, bars and nightlife venues have been financially devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Even before the pandemic when operating at 100% occupancy, these small businesses were struggling to stay open. Now we’re seeing widespread closures, approximately 150,000 industry workers are still out of their jobs, and the overwhelming majority of these remaining small businesses cannot afford to pay rent.

“The hospitality industry is essential to New York’s economic and social fabric, and to ensure the survival of these vital small businesses and jobs, we urgently need rent relief, an indefinite extension of outdoor dining, a roadmap for expanded indoor dining, covered business interruption insurance and immediate passage of the Restaurants Act by Congress.”

The Restaurants Act would establish funding for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which would award grants to eligible food and beverage outlets to cover certain costs. If passed, the act would support US venues with annual revenues below US$1.5 million.

One Response to “Nine in 10 New York venues can’t afford rent”

  1. B&B Rentals says:

    This is really a hard time. If those establishments open they will only have little profit but still pays the same amount of rent. If they continue closed they lose and still paying. A lot of businesses are not really in good standing after this pandemic hits internationally

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