Data Confirms That New York Rent is Unaffordable For Over Half Its Residents

February 25, 2015 | Prachi Gupta

The rent is too damn high in New York City, and the data confirms it. The New York Times analyzed a survey by the Census Bureau and reported that for the past three years, rent has soared at a rate higher than inflation — with no signs of slowing down.

From the Times:

In a city where two of every three homes is a rental, the median rent rose 3.4 percent, after adjusting for inflation, to $1,200 a month from 2011 to 2014. When factoring in utility costs, the median rose 4.3 percent, to $1,325.

Although the annual increases for rent-stabilized units are controlled by a city board, the rise was steeper for rent-stabilized apartments than for market-rate units, which are growing in number.

While housing became more expensive, the survey found that the median household income for all renters changed minimally, rising by 1.1 percent, to $41,500, from 2010 to 2013. And while rent-stabilized tenants experienced stagnant earnings, tenants in units that were not regulated had their income go up by 7.7 percent.

More than half of all New Yorkers spend more than 30% of their income on rent, meaning that the city is unaffordable –by the federal government’s standards — to most of its residents.

All of this confirms New York’s housing crisis and places even more emphasis on Bill de Blasio’s affordable housing plans. Rachel Fee, an executive for a housing advocacy group, told the Times, “We need to move the dial on this through public investment in affordable housing.”

(Photo: Peter Zoon)