Portlanders struggle with tough rental market


Portlanders pay a steep price in the nation’s toughest rental market. Only 3 percent of apartments here are vacant at any given time—half as many as were available three years ago.

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Portland has long had a reputation as an affordable West Coast city, boasting rents that are lower on average than in Seattle or San Francisco. But affordability only matters to people who can actually find an apartment.

The Portland area has the tightest rental market of any major city in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Only 3 percent of apartments here are vacant at any given time—half as many as were available three years ago.

The days of apartment companies offering a month off or free parking are long gone. Apartment managers and landlords see people lined up outside rentals, many with applications and blank checks in hand. Desperate renters are finding places have been rented within minutes after being posted on Craigslist. Some renters have offered to pay above the advertised rent if it means they can land the place.

 

Read more in today’s Willamette Week.




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