At this point, living in New York and complaining about the rent go so hand-in-hand that you’d think someone passed a law requiring we all do that. But, we always welcome a new voice to the chorus, and today Scott Stringer joined in with a report laying out the stark numbers that the median rent in New York City as a whole went up 75 percent between 2000 and 2012. Since the rent in the rest of the country went up only 44 percent in that same time period, this is officially a big freaking deal.
What caused this rent spike, gentrification? Well actually no, according to Stringer’s report as reported by Capital New York, the number of households making $100,000 or more only grew by 43,000 in the thirteen years the report covered. Which is a lot, but not as many new housing units the city built in that time. Instead, the report only offers theories, like too many loopholes in the rent regulation system, our huge population explosion in general. That, combined with the fact that New Yorkers’ real median income declined 4.8% in the same time period (thanks, capitalism!) have made New York an unaffordable nightmare city.
So what to do? Stringer says the city has got to start focusing on building housing, and doing it soon. He also called on Bill de Blasio to focus his plan for affordable housing to focus on the $20,000 to $40,000 per year earners in the city. The mayor is set to reveal his plan to build and preserve 200,000 affordable housing units in 10 years on May 1, so pencil that date in your calendar for the day this whole housing thing finally is solved for good.