‘We have a lot of students and students are paying for housing’
A couple of weeks ago, I got an email from a student who is on his way to college and was wondering if I could make some recommendations on affordable student apartment options in New York.
As an undergraduate, I was able to find a place for my son and his girlfriend in Manhattan’s Lower East Side for $2,400 a month.
They moved into a house in Greenwich Village for a month, but the rent was a whopping $2.6 million a year.
The next month, the couple sold their apartment and rented a place on a much lower income level in Brooklyn for $3,400 per month.
As I walked down the street to buy groceries, I wondered if the rents would increase in the next few months, and whether I should pay more for a place.
What I didn’t know was that this couple was paying the city more than $1 million a month to house their children and their pets in a neighborhood that was barely a decade old.
I called their attorney to ask if they were in danger of losing their home to foreclosure.
The attorney didn’t want to answer questions about whether the rent could increase because of the rising cost of living, and the couple said they were considering appealing the case.
The city had already approved the family’s application to rent an apartment in their backyard, so the family could live in it while their son attended school.
The family moved into their house in January, and they were expecting their rent to go up to $2 per day in August, but they didn’t receive a letter informing them of the increase.
“We have the option of going to court and asking for the increase, but it’s a big jump for us to pay a million dollars a month for rent,” said the student, who requested his name not be used.
“This is just ridiculous.”
According to a report released in January by the Urban Land Institute, New York City is the most expensive city in the country for renters to afford an apartment.
While the city has had a median rent of $2 for a one-bedroom apartment in 2016, the median rent for a two-bedroom was $1,072, a 23 percent increase.
The median rent in New Jersey was $3.28 for a three-bedroom, a 33 percent increase, and in California, the average rent for one- and two-bedrooms increased 20 percent in a year, to $1.93 and $1.,086, respectively.
“New York is one of the most unaffordable cities for renters in the nation,” said Paul Solman, director of the Urban Institute’s Housing and Urban Development Program.
“But it’s also one of those places where a lot more people are able to afford housing and a lot less are having to go into bankruptcy to get the support they need.”
The median cost of rent in Brooklyn and Manhattan was $2 million, while the average price of rent for two- and three-beds in the Bronx was $750,000 and $2 billion, respectively, according to data from the Manhattan Borough of Queens.
According to the New York Housing Authority, the city’s median rent was $4,000 in January and $3 a month in March.
In New Jersey, the most affordable borough, the rate for one and two bedrooms was $8,000, and for three- and four-bedroom apartments, $10,000.
For one-bed apartments in Manhattan, the rent is $2 a month and for two bedrooms, $2 annually.
For three- or four-bed houses, the minimum rent is just $2 more a month on average.
“There’s really no way for a landlord to make a living off of these properties without having to raise the rents,” said Solman.
“They’re basically taking on all of these tenants in their rent-controlled units.”
According a report from the nonprofit housing advocacy group Renter’s Rights, the typical rent for an apartment with a bathroom is $1 per month for a 1,000-square-foot unit, and $7.25 per month on an 11-foot walk-in unit.
“These properties are literally taking on these tenants and their children in a way that is absolutely outrageous,” said Jessica Kwan, a lawyer with Renter`s Rights.
“If you are making a profit off of that, and that is the rent that you are paying, you need to get out of the business.”
In the New Yorker City, there is one tenant who has managed to find affordable housing.
His name is Brian and he lives in the Upper East Side with his wife, three children, and his dog, Rufus.
Brian has owned and operated a bar and grill since 2014, and he has been struggling financially for the past year.
“I am one of these people who really likes the city,” said Brian, who also goes by the stage name Brian the Bassist.
“So many people