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Monthly Rent Checks Taking a Bite - 8/6/15

With apartment rents rising, more households are finding that their monthly rent check is eating up more than a majority of their paycheck.  According to a report from the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies featured in the Washington Post, approximately twenty point seven million rental households, or about half of all renters, spent more than thirty percent of their income on housing in twenty thirteen. 

About eleven million of those households spent more than half of their paycheck on rent and utilities, up thirty seven percent from two thousand and three.  Financial advisors typically recommend that people spend less than a third of their pay on housing.  The situation is of course more challenging in cities that are both expensive and where there are a lot of low-wage jobs.  In Miami, close to thirty six percent of renters spent more than half of their pay on rent and utilities in twenty thirteen, highest among the one hundred metropolitan areas studied. 

But this is not simply about low wage workers.  The number of people making between forty five thousand and seventy five thousand who spent more than fifty percent of their income on housing rose seventy two percent between two thousand and three and two thousand and thirteen.

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.