Tenants in the Houston region face a 14.7 percent rise in rent; how can you find something more affordable?

Rents are increasing at an alarming rate for an increasing number of tenants. It drives many people to relocate, while others struggle to find affordable homes.

According to ApartmentData.com, rents in Houston have increased 14.7 percent over the last twelve months. The average monthly rent is $1,200, up from just under $1,050 a year ago at this time. Additionally, 91.5 percent of the space is occupied.

“It increased,” La’Porsha Thomas stated of her rental home. “I increased my payment from $1000 to about $1300.”

“If I didn’t currently have a roommate, I would be unable to afford living there alone,” another tenant, Katie Willig, explained.

“There are a few differences that I’ve seen, such as how costly apartments have been,” tenant Hayley Ockerhausen remarked.

Many renters complain that their incomes are not keeping up with rising rents.

“Even with work, you will not be compensated for the high expense of living in Houston. As a result, it’s difficult, “Thomas stated. “If you don’t have a solid job, I’m not sure how you could afford it,” Willig explained.

According to analysts, the 14.7 percent increase in rentals results from several reasons, including increasing demand from employment growth, more migration to Texas, and a delay in apartment development.

According to CoStar, the Houston region requires 40,700 new units, but only 18,700 were completed in 2021, and just 12,900 are expected this year.

Additionally, property managers report that property taxes, utilities, insurance, supplies, and labor are increasing.

“We’re witnessing an increase in the number of folks with affordability concerns,” said David Northern, Sr., President, and CEO of the Houston Housing Authority.

Northern notes that more tenants are contacting HHA to address housing scarcity in the region.

“The majority of our customers are low-income individuals, members of disadvantaged groups, and seniors with impairments. We must communicate effectively with the numerous landlords who are willing to lease to our clients, “Northern said.

Rent regulation, he feels, is one answer. “Rent regulation does not exist in Texas. Rent can be charged at any rate the renter desires. Additionally, you may discriminate against certain of our clients who have vouchers; you can claim that we don’t want to lease to these individuals, “As Northern said.

According to certain Houstonians we spoke with, some renters require assistance.

“I’m confident that if they could subsidize housing for folks earning less than a particular wage, it would help,” Natasha Cigarroa remarked.

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Here are some suggestions for lowering your rent:

  • Take on a roommate.
  • Consider renting an apartment during the winter, when rents are lower.
  • Rent should be negotiated with your landlord. They’d prefer to retain a good tenant rather than incur the expense of locating a new one.
  • Offer to pay a few months’ rent in advance in exchange for a reduction.
  • Take out a lease that is longer than a year.
  • Allow someone else to use your parking place or garage.
  • Consider rental properties that are privately held.
  • Relocate to a less expensive place.
  • Offer to assist your landlord with repairs or office work.
  • Inquire about referral fees for introducing new renters.