Increasing home prices have had the effect of simultaneous increasing rents. People who can’t afford to purchase a home are now finding it increasingly expensive to rent one.
Data from Apartments.com shows average rent prices are up 7.5% year-over-year, which is three times the normal growth rate. It’s even worse in popular Sunbelt housing markets that have seen a dramatic influx of new residents during the pandemic. The Washington Post cites the case of apartment residents in Phoenix who were told their rent would go up by $400 a month, a 33% increase. Housing experts say it’s partly because markets like Phoenix are growing in popularity. It’s also because many young people who left the cities at the start of the pandemic are returning.
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“I think we’re going to see increases for the next 12 to 18 months,” Robert Pinnegar, president of the National Apartment Association, told the Post. “We’ve never had three generations in the rental housing space, at least not in the numbers we’re seeing now.” Renter Lauren Campos, who lives in Phoenix, received notification that her rent was going up by $400.00 a month, a 33% increase.
Campos and her fiancé read the letter in shock. The property management company gave them four days to decide whether to commit to stay or leave by the end of July. They spent the rest of the day pouring over apartment listings online only to realize that they would either have to move or downsize from their two-bedroom place to a one-bedroom.
“It almost feels like there is nowhere to go. It’s just insane everywhere,” said Campos, 28, a lifelong Phoenix resident who has noticed a growing number of California license plates in her complex’s parking lot. ″It feels like I’m being chased out of my own home, and it’s the worst feeling in the world.”