Real Estate

RENTcafé: 83% of renters can’t afford to live where they want

Sky-high prices in job nodes make a hellacious commute nearly universal for renters

A RENTcafé survey of more than 2,000 renters found that less than 17% lived close to their desired location, meaning that 83% of renters have to go the extra mile(s) to get where they’re going.

The top-rated reason for this is, you guessed it, the rent is too damn high.

According to RENTcafé, apartments in desirable areas (aka job centers) cost $1,655 per month, a 37% increase over the national average rent of $1,211 in regular or low-rated locations.

These numbers vary by metro, and while it is easy to point to the coasts as the greatest propagators of high rents, the issue of affordability has crept into the Midwest as well.

Chicago’s split between the average apartment and the desirable apartment is an average of $925 per month. That’s a deep dish slice of just about any wallet.

In St. Louis, the split is $537 per month more for the desirable apartment, and in Memphis renters can pay an extra $350 to ascend from average to desirable.

According to the survey, 60% of respondents said they are not able to pay more than they already are, or at most, they could pay an extra $100 per month. This means the majority of renters cannot rent apartments close to where they work or play. Even in Memphis, which is one of the more affordable housing markets in the nation, the desirable apartments are an average of more than three times the maximum rent that respondents said they could afford.

Bring on the hellacious commutes.

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