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Behind The Mic With Joe Mathieu: Sky High Massachusetts Rents Could Go Higher

By Joe Mathieu, WBZ NewsRadio 1030
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Joe Mathieu has returned to his professional home town and assumed the...
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BOSTON (CBS) – Rents in Massachusetts are going through the roof.

On the rise for years now, they’re causing some people to give more than half their income to the landlord, according to a new study by Harvard.

It finds Massachusetts has the sixth highest rents in the entire country.

To be clear I’m not just talking about Boston here. This is the entire state with a median rent of $1,000 a month.

And as rents have gone up, the median income among renters has gone down, creating an extra pinch that’s leaving more families with fewer options. In some cases, it’s leaving them homeless.

That’s one reason why the number of families in emergency shelters is ballooning.

And the irony of this story is that the housing downturn of a few years ago is a big part of the reason why rents are so high.

This all started when the housing bubble burst. People were reluctant to buy single-family houses until prices stopped falling. So they piled into apartments, creating a supply crunch and sending rents higher.

Rents kept climbing as the economy recovered. And we’ve seen research suggesting the problem could get even worse.

You can blame retiring Baby Boomers. The biggest wave of retirees this nation has ever seen.

A Greater Boston housing forecast from the Boston Foundation predicts that when all those Boomers downsize from houses to condos and apartments they will make supplies even tighter.

And prices potentially even higher.

Follow Joe on Twitter @joemathieuwbz

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