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Many Ohioans struggling to pay increasing rent while costs of everything rises

For Rent Sign
Posted at 10:36 PM, Jul 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-29 23:18:30-04

CLEVELAND — Learning the price behind "for rent" and "for sale" signs is often dreadful nowadays and finding a home in your price range to buy is rough as interest rates rise.

“We know that's how you build generational wealth and there's certainly racial equity concerns that we deal with,” said John Petit with Community Legal Aid. “Those windows are being shut again because of the difficulty to get those loans and cost of that mortgage."

Julie Wisneski, who is with The United Way says it’s getting a lot of calls from people with no housing options.

“We are receiving hundreds of calls through United Ways 2-1-1 countywide hotline for people facing extreme circumstances,” she said. “Those circumstances are housing instability, increase in rent, they're getting evicted, they need good stable housing."

According to our partners at the Akron Beacon Journal, Ohioans need to make roughly $17 dollars an hour to afford rent and only four of the 10 occupations with the most employees in Ohio make more than that wage.

“Our clients that we work have limited rental options and it’s not that much government assistance out there,” said Petit. “It’s fewer and fewer section 8 vouchers, there’s a waiting list that is incredibly high."

Petit describes this housing issue a layered issue that is bigger than rent.

“There’s a mismatch now and landlords are having an advantage,” said Petit. “Landlords feel that they don’t really need to make repairs, so it makes a difficult situation for tenants because they want to move to a better place but those places just arent out there."

As Americans juggle this housing issue, while trying to make wages meet and pay for everything else, organizations like United Way have a 2-1-1 help line for assistance, and Community Legal Aid helps renters and home owners find solutions too.

“If you’re having issues with your housing, your mortgage or rent then you’re probably having issues with food, utilities, all of that impacts your mental health and many other needs,” said Wisneski. “We want people to know that theyre not alone."

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