New York City renters in market-rate apartments can expect to spend nearly 60 percent of their income on housing, as opposed to the recommended 33 percent, according to a recent study by StreetEasy, an online real-estate listing service, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The commonly cited guideline is that people should be prepared to spend one-third of their monthly income on housing costs. However, the study has found that measure doesn’t even come close to making sense for the average New York City renter:New Yorkers making a median income of just over $55,000 a year would have to spend more than $32,000 a year on the typical rent, according to the report. For many people, that has meant either an existence of living hand-to-mouth, paycheck-to-paycheck, doubling and tripling up with roommates, or moving a farther distance from work (deeper into the boroughs).
The study also found that Brooklyn renters carried the heaviest burden, compared with what they make, according to the StreetEasy report. In New York City as a whole, people need to spend 58.4 percent of their incomes on the median rent of $2,690 a month. In Brooklyn they would have to spend 60 percent to write the borough’s typical rent check of $2,487 a month.
Alan Lightfeldt, a data scientist at StreetEasy, said the study reflected the rapid growth in the popularity of the borough as a place to live, while the incomes of lower-income or middle-income residents who may have lived there for years haven’t grown as quickly.