A view of the Water Street apartments from the bridge over the Mad River. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF

Half of Dayton area renters spend ‘too much’ on rent

Nearly half of renters in the Dayton area are “cost burdened,” meaning they spend 30 percent or more of their income on housing, which can put a major strain on a household budget, especially for those at the lower end of the income scale, according to analysis by Apartment List released today.

Dayton has been nationally recognized for having a cheap housing market, compared with most other medium- and large-sized metro areas.

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Rents in the Dayton metro area have remained fairly steady in recent years, while incomes have seen some growth, according to the Apartment List’s analysis of Census data.

But many residents in rental housing continue to shoulder heavy housing costs, including the more than one in five Dayton-area renters who are severely cost burdened, meaning they spend at least half of their income on housing, the data show.

Dayton’s numbers are fairly comparable to Ohio and the rest of the nation.

“This report aligns with other studies we’ve seen showing how the long-term trends of rising rents and stagnant wages are taking a bigger and bigger chunk out of working families’ paychecks,” said Marcus Roth, spokesman and development director of the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio.

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In 2016, about 47 percent of renters in the Dayon metro area paid 30 percent or more of their income on housing, the analysis of U.S. Census data shows. Slightly more renters in the region were cost burdened last year than in 2015 (46.9 percent).

But on a positive note, the share of area renters who are severely cost burdened did fall to the lowest level in more than a decade.

About 23.2 percent of local renters are dealing with seriously heavy housing costs. That’s at the lowest level since 2005. In 2011, 31.3 percent of renters were severely cost burdened.

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