Low-income Californians getting squeezed by rising rents

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Photo by virgosun via Flickr/CC.

If you’ve gone apartment or house hunting in recent weeks, you’ve probably noticed how much is being charged to rent or buy.

Of course, it varies from neighborhood to neighborhood. But one thing is certain. Housing costs are on the rise, and government is doing less and less to help people who aren’t able to afford it.

Median rents in California have risen more than 20 percent between 2000 and 2012. Yet median income fell by 8 percent.

A new report from the California Housing Partnership Corporation says close to a million Californians who make ‘extremely-low’ incomes are especially vulnerable to the lack of affodable housing.

And as incomes stay stagnant or fall, and rents keep going up, that number is expected to rise – especially here in Southern California.

KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis talked about rising rents with Stuart Gabriel, who directs the Ziman Center for Real Estate at UCLA and is Professor of Finance at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management.