TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — As housing costs continue to rise and show no signs of slowing down, rent prices are quickly becoming one of the biggest inflationary pressures on American residents, and Tampa is no exception. The housing cost burden continues to grow as rent prices rise and wages decrease.
According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, housing cost burdens are the portions of income spent on housing. Cost-burdened families are those who pay more than 30% of their income on housing costs, according to the department.
A Zillow study on the cost of renting by race found that housing burdens are not equal among the different communities in the United States.
Among renters in Tampa, the cost burden of housing is not equal. By HUD definitions, all racial demographics in Tampa are cost-burdened, particularly among minorities.
The Zillow report on costs of renting in major metro areas said “rent burdens are unequal across races, and while the nation’s white and Asian households typically spend below the 30% threshold (28.6% and 26.0%, respectively), Black and Latinx communities spend more – 34.0% and 32.1%, respectively.”
Compared to their white neighbors, Black and Hispanic households pay more of their monthly income on rent.
In Tampa, none of the demographics surveyed payed less than 30% of their income to afford rent. Black households pay 37.7% to rent, while Hispanic households pay 35.6%. White households pay 33.1% of their income to rent every month.
By comparison, Orlando’s Hispanic population pays more of their income to rent than any other demographic, with Hispanics paying 42% of their income, versus Black paying 34.9%, and their white neighbors paying 29.7%. Miami renters pay an even higher share of their monthly income.
Asian households spend the least per month out of their paychecks, compared to other demographics, according to the study. Still, “Miami is the least-affordable metro for both Asian and white households, requiring these renters to dig into their pockets to the tune of 39.8% and 35.1% of their incomes, respectively.” The study showed that Black and Hispanic households pay 40.7% and 41.1%, respectively.
Affordable housing is an issue that will not just go away. The Zillow study notes that the disparity in housing affordability is not an issue that developed overnight, so a solution to years of inequity won’t appear overnight either.
The study said there are multiple “antidotes” to the issues and inequities facing American renters, but “first and foremost is the creation of more housing supply of all types to help combat the mismatch between supply and demand that is the primary driver of today’s rapidly rising housing costs.”
With rent prices continuing to rise and wages actually decreasing in October, as of the latest report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, rent burdens are only going to increase. The Zillow data, along with economic reports from the BLS, shows that as rent prices continue to rise, rent burdens will just increase more for minority renters, compared to their white neighbors.