A recent report from Alignable, an online network for small business owners across North America, indicates that  while several small business sectors saw a decline in their recovery this month, in terms of paying the rent, statistics remained steady. For the second month in a row, 26% of all SMBs couldn't cover rent on time and in full for January, which is tied with last month as the lowest monthly level of rent delinquency since the pandemic began.

However, challenges continue to mount for some businesses: 44% of minority-owned SMBs struggled to pay their rent this month (up 1% from December).  Beyond that, restaurants, beauty salons, retailers and manufacturers experienced more significant increases in rent delinquency in January, reflecting other economic statistics that showed they were badly impacted by the Omicron threat and inflation. 

These findings are based on Alignable's January Rent Poll of 6,305 small business owners surveyed between 1/15/22 and 1/30/22. 

Minority-Owned Businesses Continue To Suffer

Compared to December, minority-owned businesses represented the only disadvantaged group in Alignable's polls to experience more rent troubles, which Alignable says shows that more federal help needs to be provided for minority-owned businesses than they're currently receiving.

However, women-owned and veteran-owned businesses posted the lowest rent delinquency rates they've seen since the pandemic started. The rate from women-owned businesses is now 27%, still a bit above the new average, but 4% less than last month and 9% less than November.

And veteran-owned businesses are now at 19%, down 2% from a rate of 21% in December, and down 16% since November. 

Looking at this chart, we see  several industries that have been most impacted by other phases of the pandemic are starting to show how Omicron (and inflation) are taking a toll on their ability to pay their full rent on time.

Report Says 44% Of Minority-Owned Businesses Can't Afford Jan. Rent
Report Says 44% Of Minority-Owned Businesses Can't Afford Jan. Rent

TAKEAWAYS

  • 44% of minority-owned businesses still can’t afford the rent (up 1% from December)
  • 39% of restaurants (up 5%) couldn’t cover January rent, along with 38% of salons (up 12%) and 33% of retailers (up 8%) compared to Dec.
  • New York now has the worst rent delinquency rate among small businesses at 33% (up 3% from Dec.). Other states saw improvement including Massachusetts, California and Georgia. 

See the full report at Alignable

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