Lexingtonians frustrated by how much they’re paying in rent

Lexingtonians frustrated by how much they’re paying in rent
Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 10:09 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The rent continues to rise in Lexington.

According to a recent report by Apartment List, rent in the city increased 3.7% month-over-month in May. That’s compared to a 1.2% increase nationally. The report says the month-over-month rent growth in Lexington ranks number one among the nation’s 100 largest cities.

Year-over-year, rents grew nationwide by 15.3% over the past year compared to a 17.9% increase in Lexington. The city had 8.4% rent growth at this time last year.

Lexingtonians tell us they’re frustrated with how much they’re paying in rent.

“If we don’t do something about it as a city, it’s just going to get worse,” said renter Emma Anderson.

The median rents in Lexington currently stand at $957 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,181 for a two-bedroom.

While rent has increased in Lexington, the report says the city is still more affordable than many large cities across the country. The report says Lexington’s median two-bedroom rent is below the national average of $1,320.

“A lot of my friends’ rents have been going up, but I’ve been fortunate to not have to deal with that,” renter Lauren Heart said.

Some Central Kentuckians, however, feel their paychecks aren’t keeping up with the cost of living. The report says rents in Lexington are up by 26.7% since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.

Dejhanea Blanks works in Lexington but lives in Richmond.

“It’s more than frustrating. It’s discouraging, really, because it’s like, ok, I work here but I can’t afford to live here. So, that makes it harder and then with gas, it doesn’t make it any better,” said Blanks.

Experts say many factors are responsible for higher rents, including a nationwide housing shortage, extremely low rental vacancies, and a high demand among young adults to move into apartments.

Apartment List says rent growth will likely continue as we head further into summer, the rental market’s busy season.

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