Rising Rent Costs Continue
There are some who have rented a home or apartment for over a decade and now find they are in danger of being forced to move. Some owners decide to either sell the property in a market that has seen increased equity or increase the monthly rent amount substantially, thereby limiting those who can afford it. Some rent increases have even doubled in the amount, which most tenants simply don’t have in their budgets
Forced to Move
Being forced to move because of surging rents this past year has become a common occurrence across the entire country. The causes of this are various but two stand out: a housing crunch during 2020 and 2021 and landlords looking to make up for revenue lost during the pandemic, when some rents were temporarily frozen and evictions were not allowed. Many investors have tapped into the rental market where they purchase older homes or apartment complexes so they can make renovations and then charge higher rents.
Impact on Seniors
The impact of all this has been especially difficult for the 30% of Americans over age 55 who rent their homes. Senior citizens are often on a fixed income or have a financial situation that does not allow them to have the qualifications needed to purchase a home. Also, some prefer renting to avoid the upkeep required and the additional expenses, such as insurance, HOA dues and taxes. With the lack of rental options, one course of action normally would be to refer seniors to organizations that offer subsidized housing but the waiting lists are already two to five years for affordable housing.
Financial advisers recommend that housing costs not exceed 30% of household income, but more than half of older renters are above that threshold. This rental issue has become a crisis for young and old alike. It’s not just mortgage rates and inflation that we need to be concerned about, but the lack of affordable housing for many different generations. Not only will the younger adults be moving back in with parents, but the “senior parents” of parents may have to do so as well. We may be returning to times when multiple generations share the same residence.