Security Concerns Limit Growth of Instant Payments for Rent-Related Refunds

Manhattan real estate

Rental prices keep on rising year after year, and some rental contracts have been tightened by requiring larger deposits at the signing. To illustrate: since early 2020, house rents have increased nearly 30% overall, according to the real estate website Zillow. Higher rental costs and higher deposits can also mean higher rent-related refunds, such as a returned security deposit at the end of a tenancy. And just as digital options have proliferated for paying rent, data shows that the digitization of refunds has picked up steam. According to a recent PYMNTS Intelligence research study in collaboration with Ingo Money, 4 out of 10 consumers who received rent-related refunds primarily used instant methods. Those who did not opt for instant refunds despite having the ability to choose them cite a variety of reasons.

Reasons for not choosing instant

Per the PYMNTS Intelligence study, more than half of renters were given the option to receive refunds through instant payments, and two-thirds of this subgroup opted to receive the refunds via instant. Those who prefer not to receive their rent-related refunds via instant payment methods were most likely to indicate security concerns and lack of incentives as reasons why. Specifically, among these individuals, 7 out of 10 expressed security concerns and reluctance to share their payment credentials as their reasons for disinterest and 64% implicated the lack of incentives or rewards to use instant payments.

Renters typically receive rent-related refunds only sporadically, but when it is time, they increasingly expect them to be delivered digitally. The average size of a refund received non-instantly was nearly $850, with the size of these refunds correlating with the tenant’s income. Property management companies seeking to utilize instant pay to attract renters, especially among the high-income segment, may benefit from improved marketing that addresses these concerns.

About the numbers

Generation Instant: Renters and Refunds,” is a PYMNTS Intelligence and Ingo Money research collaboration. The study is based on a census-balanced survey of 2,606 consumers across the United States that examines consumer satisfaction with disbursements received from government and non-government entities.