Nearly two in three millennials are renters. This isn’t good news for them.
The rent is WAY too damn high in these cities.
While the rents in San Francisco — which are astronomical at more than $3,000 per month in some areas of the city — make headlines, that’s not the city where rents put the highest cost burden on residents.
That title belongs to Fresno, Calif., an inland California city roughly 2 ½ hours from San Jose, where nearly 35% of residents are what’s called “severely cost burdened,” according to data released Thursday from Apartment List. That means they are spending at least half of their income on rent.
Spending half your income just to afford the rent is far too much, experts say. Indeed one prominent measure is that you shouldn’t spend more than 30% of your income on housing costs in order to be able to truly afford life’s other necessities — though nearly half of all renters spend more than 30% of their income on housing costs.
Here are the five large cities in America where at least three in 10 residents are considered “severely cost burdened” when it comes to renting a pad:
5 cities where renting is way too expensive
Percentage of residents who spend half or more of their income on rent
Fresno tops the list, in part, because it has a lot of low-paying jobs in fields like agriculture, explains Sydney Bennet, a senior research associate at Apartment List. She adds that the whole area has also not had much luck attracting new companies because much of the workforce has low levels of education. In the case of Miami, it gets a lot of affluent international investors buying its properties, which can drive up rents — and many of the area workers are low-wage service workers, she adds.
The issue of rental affordability often disproportionately impacts young people. That’s because, for one, more young people rent: About two in three households headed by someone under 35 rent their homes rather than own them (that number was 57% about 10 years ago). That is the highest percentage of any age group, according to the Pew data.
Plus, young people tend to make less money than older ones, which makes affording rent that much harder.
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