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Millions Can't Afford Rent

21 million people were considered burdened by the price of rent in 2016, meaning more than 30 percent of incomes is dedicated to housing and utilities

Posted: Jan. 8, 2018 7:21 AM

MEDFORD, Ore. -- It's not just a problem for Oregonians, millions of Americans are struggling to pay rent. According to a Harvard report, almost 21 million people were considered burdened by the price of rent in 2016. 

Meaning more than 30 percent of incomes is dedicated to housing and utilities. Some are in even worse shape. The study shows that 25 percent of renters pay more than half of their income for housing. Losing such a big chunk of your check can impact your savings and force tough spending decisions down the road. Like deciding whether to pay rent or pay for food.

there is some good news.

An improving economy and rising paychecks have helped ease the burden for some renters. But affluent renters combined with high building and land costs are driving the prices up.

Here are seven suggested ways you might be able to lower payments:

  1. Try to switch providers every year.
  2. Call your cable company to see if you can negotiate a lower rate.
  3. Cut the cord and switch to a streaming service.
  4. Consider getting a roommate.
  5. If you are a good renter -- haggle with your landlord.
  6. Try to talk the company out of raising your rent when it comes time to renew.
  7. If an appliance breaks, ask your landlord about getting credit on your next rent statement.

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