TAMPA, Fl. (WLNS) – Rising rents have exacerbated the nation’s housing crisis.
A new report shows that in 91% of U.S. Counties, low-wage workers can’t afford modest one-bedroom apartments.
Like any renter, Kevida Gued knows Tampa is a landlord’s market. But this single mother of three’s family needs an affordable three-bedroom, and fast.
Their lease was up July 31. They looked at over fifty places and couldn’t find a home.
On average Tampa’s rents ballooned 22% in the last year.
Valerie Bannon’s landlord in St. Petersburg hiked her rent from $1,500 to $2,400 a month for a modest four bedroom.
Without options, legally blind, earning under $20,000 a year, this overnight auditor moved her family into a hotel, the bill paid by a charity.
“It’s no different than a hurricane or something disrupting your household and taking your home away. And you being homeless, not having anywhere to go and not knowing what to do,” she said.
Fueling that hurricane here: thousands of pandemic relocations. Inflation. Rising interest rates discourage buyers. And few tenant protections.
Tampa recently put $5 million dollars toward rental assistance.
The money was gone in two days.
Kevida Gued keeps looking, calling, emailing. Everything’s expensive. One home she looked at had a major deal-breaker: A pond. A danger for her autistic son.