Submitted by blondiebell t3_10l2ka1 in pittsburgh

I have lived in my Highland Park apartment for 3 years. My only utility bill was electric and the rent was $1170 for a large 2 bedroom. I have only seen my rent go up $40 on each renewal and felt pretty satisfied with my unit and the company I lived with, even recommending it highly to friends and transplants to the city.

That is until I gave notice that I wasn't renewing (I'm moving to my first home) and they toured my unit to prospective new tenants. Y'all these new tenants are getting screwed over.

  1. they raised the rent by almost $250

  2. tenat now pays $60 for water/trash/sewage per month

  3. tenant now pays electric AND gas

All of that may not sound terrible to some, but this unit has electric baseboard heating and old windows. My highest ever electric bill was $615, no I'm not kidding. When the summer months evened out the electric bill and I finally got on budget billing, the cost of the rent made that crazy electric bill manageable, but not any more for these new tenants.

Some poor sucker is going to pay almost $2100/month when that big bill hits...

I'll do my best if they ask me questions to be honest about the electric costs, but boy did it floor me to learn all the new costs being saddled by the tenants.



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Confident_End_3848 t1_j5ujybe wrote

This country needs a comprehensive housing policy that recognizes the need for people to have access to affordable housing.


blondiebell OP t1_j5uopmd wrote

Exactly, thank you. I dont think that it shouldn't be allowed to be profitable and I dont even think that landlords shouldn't exist, but affordable housing should have always been a human right.

As an investment, rentals are okay in my opinion, but not as sole income and not at the expense of affordability. There is no moral justification for a massive % increase in profits year after year because you arbitrarily increase the rent just because you can.


MaybeADumbass t1_j5urkuq wrote

> There is no moral justification for a massive % increase in profits year after year because you arbitrarily increase the rent just because you can.

Every single bit of maintenance for a property has gotten significantly more expensive over the past few years, though. Every contractor you might hire for repairs is booked solid for and costs more than they did two years ago, and every single material has gone up in price. That carpet that might have cost $1500 to replace three years ago will now cost closer to $3000. If your landlord plans to renovate or repair any units between tenants, now, it'll cost significantly more money than before. It only makes sense to raise rent in that situation.


weavs13 t1_j5v9toh wrote

If they are improving them that fine. But how many rentals is that happening in? My former landlord slapped new paint on the walls and asked $500 more per month.


blondiebell OP t1_j5uwydm wrote

We completely agree. Costs have gone up and it is okay for prices to reflect that, However there is importantance in separating cost, revenue, and profit.

Just to spin a hypothetical here are some numbers: I am renting a unit for $100, so I made $100 in revenue. I then paid $60 in upkeep costs so my profit is only $40, but that pays my bills and I'm happy. Next year I find out my costs are going to be $80, I dont want to only make $20 profit so I raise my rent to $120.

That whole situation is fine so long as that $40 isnt my sole income and if the house burns to the ground or the tenant dies, I dont lose everything.

The issue is when the same scenario plays out like this: The next year I find out my costs are going up to $100, so I plan to raise rent to $140, but before i do i find out my friend down the street just built a new unit and rented it for $300. I figure since someone rented that apartment at that price i can ask that price from my renter so i do. They agree to it because their kid just started school and they want to stay in that school district. I bring in $300 revenue, costs are $100, I make $200 profit.

The next year it's the same. Cost increases $20 but another friend has built a new unit and is charging $500. I figure I'll try again since someone rented in the area for that price. My current renter can't afford it and moves out. I lower my price to $450 and get someone who couldn't afford $500, but can just squeeze by at $450. I bring in $450 revenue, costs are $120, I make $330 profit.

I am now an asshole....

Just because I could and someone did pay it I raised my rent enormously and made huge increases in profit.

That's just business, we agree on that, but that was and is someone's home. Legally, I shouldn't be allowed to do that. I priced a family out of their home, I'm making it so it's harder for the current people to save for their own future. If all my friends are doing the same thing we are collectively pricing whole communities out. If the whole country is doing it we are ruining people's chances to have stable housing.


shepherd_lover t1_j5whiy4 wrote

Thanks for laying it out like this. Makes total sense. I often grapple with the differing perspectives of both sides (landlord and tenant) and this was helpful.


blondiebell OP t1_j5wid7o wrote

Sure thing. Its undeniably complicated, I dont expect anyone to just get it, so do let me know if you have any specific questions I can try to clarify :)


NovelAuntieGin t1_j5z3o9f wrote

I think that most property owners just can't fathom the concept that most renters don't really gaf about new carpet.

Maybe YOU or your wife or your side piece can't imagine living with just... renting a carpet cleaner from Save-A-Lot for $35 dollars for the home where you live.

But the people who are paying off your mortgage, taxes, insurance, ++? They sacrifice something, embarrass their kids, AND go hungry a day just to rent a carpet cleaner from Save-A-Lot so they can hope and wish to get back that deposit that you already spent on whatever you think will impress somebody.

Just remember that those toddlers of hers will be the ones changing your diapers when you're old and incontinent.

Fuck them at your own peril !


[deleted] t1_j5uzt77 wrote

Communism would fix your problem.


blondiebell OP t1_j5va8hj wrote

Sure if you want to jump right to that conclusion...

If the government was truly run and operated fairly and equally and made equal housing available to anyone and everyone that wanted or needed it then everyone would be housed.

But you know that isnt the argument at hand and that your take is just argumentative and disingenuous.


[deleted] t1_j5vau2s wrote

Supply and Demand. Move to Johnstown get a Friggin Mansion for 1,200 a month


blondiebell OP t1_j5veiwr wrote

Supply and demand pricing is a bullshit for a basic survival need. We're fighting hard as it is for medication, education, and food to be accessible and housing is having the same issues.

It has never and will never be the answer to tell someone to move or leave when the problem is fundamental. You dont tell someone who's depressed to just be happy. You dont tell a starving person to just eat. And you dont tell a homeless or underprivileged person to just move.

Moving is a HUGE privilege when you can do it by choice and can be devastating if it is forced.


MrSchenleyMD t1_j5wxz48 wrote

“Supply and demand pricing is bullshit for a basic survival need.”

Say it louder for the people in the back.

Tangential— I work in healthcare and see firsthand how the “free market” doesn’t apply in my industry. What is the limit you would pay to save a loved one, treat your child’s cancer, or help yourself walk again after something catastrophic? For most sane people, the answer is “everything I have, and then some.”

You can’t build a fair market when the demand is essentially infinite. There’s parallels in the housing market, too. We can argue that certain types of housing are luxury goods, and that people do need to be able to make money landlording (or no one would), but at the end of the day, people need a roof over their heads. There needs to be ethics involved in these decisions too, not just pure profit motive.


blondiebell OP t1_j5x5ep6 wrote

Thank you for sharing your experience in the healthcare system. I'll be honest that I usually avoid that topic because I truly cannot handle thinking about the disparities for long without myself struggling.

Why so many people in this thread and life feel it is normal to let such a horrible system continue I do not know. Just because the situation has gotten to this point does not mean it is okay, does not mean it should have gotten here, or that it should continue.


geoffh2016 t1_j5wgp1z wrote

100% agree. Local laws are also important. I was surprised when moving to Pittsburgh that there isn't a "Tenant Bill of Rights" here. In Chicagoland, the landlords had to put security deposits in an interest account not mixed with their assets, give a receipt, and one time we actually got more back than we initially paid. (Granted, that was an honest landlord.)

Supposedly Biden is pushing for more:

>The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority and Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, for instance, have agreed to cap annual rental increases to 5% per year for federal- or state-subsidized affordable housing.

Fingers crossed on both the local and national level.


not28 t1_j5x41my wrote

But that would be socialism or something.


jm2054 t1_j5u992q wrote

Rent has gone up a lot your small increase was because it's easier to keep a good tenant even if you can get more out of the unit. They have every right to rent the unit at market price to a new tenant. Before I brought my house my rent where id been 4 years was 675 and went up 5 each year. New leasers were paying 850 for the same units.


blondiebell OP t1_j5u9wio wrote

I'm not saying they arent allowed to do it, but in my opinion it is immoral, and should be something that is made illegal. There are some places already looking into caping rent increases and I really hope it is something we can adopt in Pittsburgh. Increasing rent is expected and normal, but to the degree and values it is happening is alarming, and boarders on price gouging


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5ubpys wrote

Your landlord was giving you a good deal and needs to make up for it on the next tenant. If you feel bad you can give some money to the next tenant… jk. Caping rent usually causes land lords to raise by the max amount every year. Rent controls are a controversial economic policy with disadvantages and tricky externalities. I’m not saying is moral to charge high rent but it’a just really difficult to improve the situation without unintended consequences. The bottom line is supply and demand dictates more housing supply means lower rents so the best way to help people is promote new housing and stand up to nimby influences.


blondiebell OP t1_j5uh9tz wrote

Nothing you've said is inherently wrong, but that doesn't mean it should just be acceptable. Why is it even a joke that the responsibility falls to me if I dont like the way another person/renter is being treated.

We completely agree that changing the system as it exists would be very difficult, but it shouldn't be considered impossible just because its always been this way.

The point of this post was to call out the drastic increase that I'm seeing first hand and call attention to the need for solutions, not to argue over why it's a problem.


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5uiuf8 wrote

Yeah I know I’m too sarcastic and you are not the first person to point that out ;) Sometimes a little humor makes people pay attention to what I say next and that is my main point was building more housing would be more effective than a rent cap. There is wide consensus among experts that have studied the issue of how to lower rents.

There are several projects in Oakland, Shadyside and the east end that have been blocked for being two stories too high or not having a gazillion parking spaces and it’s gotten so bad there is a local YIMBY group to help get more housing built in these neighborhoods


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5uv5i8 wrote

Many smart people are trying to fix the problem but solutions have been elusive. Why haven’t we gotten stronger tenants laws? near everyone hates landlords so shouldn’t that be a popular law to pass? We need stronger measures to police bad landlords. That might help offset the negative affects of rent controls. If you want to get involved this is something good to advocate for. It is an issue that is constantly discussed here in pittsburgh. Oakland student slums and Larimar absentee landlords and abandoned housing in the hill are some topics I’ve heard of.

you addressed that rent controls disincentivize construction of new housing and you mentioned government funded housing to fill the void. One issue with that is government built housing has been some of the worst maintained housing in the city of Pittsburgh and most projects older than that from 70s are simply being torn down and being replaced with smaller amounts of housing like the terraces in the hill district. The federal housing agency is known as one of the most corrupt and poorly run government agencies for handing out sweetheart contracts to political buddys. the housing they build tends to end up more expensive than the housing private developers build on their own.

So after all that is said and done, the simplest solution is to build more housing in neighborhoods where people want to live and that have good transit to jobs. I’m very much in favor of cracking down on bad landlords and the government filling the void with new housing but I’ve lost most faith in the government properly policing landlords and construction contractors so I’d rather focus on supporting more housing in the right places. That’s just my opinion on the issue lately


blondiebell OP t1_j5uyabu wrote

Thank you for the well thought out response. It's nice to have these conversations and find other like minded people. I can see and agree with all of your points, the issues are deep and complex and there is no single solution, let alone an easy one.

I hold out hope that a lot of it can be tackled methodically with time and concentrated effort, but I worry we wont even start down that road before there is some catastrophic catalyst first.


blondiebell OP t1_j5unggs wrote

Thank you for including the link, after giving it a read here are my thoughts. The researchers seemed to have analyzed their data on the rent control methods alone. While this made for good take aways on the effects in some areas and the differences in the method, I feel it didn't do enough to highlight how the landlords themselves let it fail. No measure to reform exists in a vacuum and when they put the rent control measures into effect I dont feel enough was done to punish landlords that let rent controlled units fall into decay. Or where the forprotfits moved nothing came to fill the void, non-profit or government funded.

With that said I don't think building more housing is a problem, but I dont think it is the only answer and it bothers me that the idea of holding landlords responsible for price gouging isnt heavily considered.

Housing should have never been made for profit, but since it is and that is nearly impossible to change, it should be regulated to a degree that means it is a safe, but NOT exponential investment.


PGHENGR t1_j5uu7f3 wrote

Think about the consequences of what you think should happen. The housing supply would pretty much be obliterated. No one would have any incentive to have a rental property if it wasn’t for profit. The housing that would be left would be subsidized, but the amount required for this government funded program would be astronomical. It would basically mean that any rental for anybody would go through the government.


blondiebell OP t1_j5v66b7 wrote

What if, hypothetically, you turn 85% of these rentals in to condos at a mortgage equal to their rent.... the housing wouldn't freaking disappear it would just mean that your rent now becomes equity and when you are ready to leave that unit for a home or another condo you get that equity back. This idea that the housing would just disappear is bonkers, it would just mean that how people own/rent/use property would need to change and that's to our benefit.


PGHENGR t1_j5v7kkq wrote

Sorry it appears you’re a very literal person. You are correct, the buildings would not just physically poof and vanish. Without any profit, why would a landlord be a landlord? So the property would effectively be taken out of the rental market.

Please, explain how this would happen. The current landlords would just….donate….their property to a program for people to buy them at this rate? No landlord is going to be a part of this. The government would then have to greatly subsidize the purchase of 85% of all of the rentals in the US?? To then sell at a low price back to the public?

I understand there is an issue here, but it’s not a simple solution. You have the think about the economic impact of these “solutions” you’re proposing.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vc3yq wrote

We are so close to agreement.

The point of the government to do exactly that, facilitate necessary exchanges for the greater good.

When most rentals were just single family homes owned by small landlords or other single families I would have agreed that the number of units available on the market would go down to a devastating degree if landlords left the game completely, but that is no longer the case. One of the biggest issues is the consolidation of available housing under single entities like companies and investment firms. If rentals were no longer profitable, those companies would sell off the units and if apartment buildings and broken up homes were sold as condos to the existing renters the companies wouldn't be donating anything. The risk/cost would fall on the creditor that funded the renters new mortgage. If that lender was the government then it would certainly be it's own issue to manage and collect of those mortgages, but that ask isnt impossible or even unreasonable given the current crisis.


shhheeeeeeeeiit t1_j5y5std wrote

Why don’t you rent out your new house for under market value? If that’s how you feel.


blondiebell OP t1_j5yz91l wrote

This isn't a gotcha point, I actually intend to. It is part of my dream goal to restore people's faith in landlords in a small way by renting out extra space in my home at a base price.

Rental property should NEVER be allowed to be someone's sole income, but I dont have any issue with it bringing supplemental income so long as it isn't taking advantage of the renters.

I'm purchasing a home within my budget because I intend to make sure I can pay for it on my own. If I decide to add a renter their cost is going to be AT MOST half of my mortgage and an equal split of utilities regardless of what the market is. I WANT to see them save money so they can do what I did and I would appreciate the ability to pay off my mortgage faster.

If I am ever privileged enough to own a 2nd home outright I still wouldn't charge "market rent" I would offer someone a rent-to-own agreement on the house so that they can actually have a chance to do what I did and build equity. If they didn't want the rent to own, they still would only have to pay the minimum amount possinle to keep the house going until I can find someone that does want the rent to own. Point being no one needs a second freaking house and that rental isnt meant to be my freaking income! It's not hard.


kellytop412 t1_j5uqfhs wrote

I know! It's crazy. My old rent was $535, after I moved out May 2021 they did zero updates and rented it for $900. I know i was getting a steal but feel bad for the poor people who are paying than much for mediocre housing.

Super grateful to now be a homeowner and not have to be at the mercy of a landlord. Though being a homeowner has its own set of cost, i don't have to worry about my mortgage jumping


blondiebell OP t1_j5us9j5 wrote

Thank you for posting your own experience. I'm excited to take on the adventure of home ownership, but watching my friends and strangers alike struggling with rent prices is awful.


followme_robot t1_j5utm10 wrote

I can only speak to my experience.

I've owned a duplex in Pittsburgh for the last 6 years.

It's a 100+ year old building which will always need some degree of improvements/upgrades.

I have never raised the rent on an existing tenant yet, the original lease terms "worked" financially for me but when there is a vacancy, I tackle the top items on the improvement/upgrade list.

Any new tenant, unfortunately pays for part of that work in the form of an updated "market rate" rent.

Right now that has led to the two units being priced radically different as the one unit looks nearly brand new while the other one is extremely dated and mainly in break fix mode as the tenant has lived there for ~15 years pre-dating my ownership.

It's not realistic for me to provide the same quality of living to a long term existing tenant vs a new tenant unless I want to ultimately displace the family with 15 years history.

I guarantee when the long term tenant leaves and I sink $20k+ into their unit, the next tenant will be "screwed" by comparison.

I welcome Federal regulation to some degree since it is definitely a "landlords market" right now but unless the government decides to buy me out, I have an obligation to make a profit else, the place will become uninhabitable.


blondiebell OP t1_j5v567b wrote

Thank you for sharing your experience. In your Specific example, you are actively improving the unit and then charging to make up the cost over time. That is normal and expected.

If you instead didn't make any changes to the unit, but charged "market rent" for it, you'd be an ass. Those landlords that are charging so much for a unit because they know people need housing and will pay whatever they ask are causing issues.

Making a profit isnt a problem so much as price gouging on a resource people need to survive is.


SavageGardner t1_j5v8xgm wrote

Was this a Mozart apartment? I lived on the corner of N Highland and Bryant and had similar rent a few years ago.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vcbgm wrote

For privacy reasons I wont confirm the company I live with, but if you've seen the same increases as I have this year it's a shame.


kellytop412 t1_j5uxw45 wrote

I didn't immediately see if either of these were mentioned contributing to the rising rent impact

  1. new construction apartments are all upscale/luxury. No one is investing in middle income rental units. The government does require a specific % be deemed "affordable" housing, but that amount is insane,coming from a person who is well above the income limits
  1. Airbnb's impact on available rental units, diminishing supply. Not so much an issue in Pittsburgh as other touristy cities, but contributes nevertheless

dfiler t1_j5v7gdw wrote

New luxury apartments reduce the price of other available units because rich people rent the new apartments and there is less demand for their previous apartment.


MeanLawLady t1_j5wyhha wrote

Everything is like this now. Not just housing. It’s every service we pay for and every good we buy. We are paying more for everything and we keep getting less and less. Companies are blaming the pandemic but it is just greed.


Ok_Amphibian_1072 t1_j5vakqh wrote

You can let them know what you paid in rent, if you have their contact information. I’ve seen posts where people have mailed a card to their old address to share rent history so there’s some form of accountability and solidarity. On your way out, you might also be able to share some resources with your landlord about winterizing homes and upgrading efficiencies. Obviously, they may not care because their costs now don’t change from how efficiently your home is able to keep heat or cool. But, with the IRA, I do know there are incentives for homeowners to invest in weatherization, renewable energy, etc. that long term do pay off in landlord’s favor. And of course that’ll help mitigate the incoming tenants utilities. I feel for you!


blondiebell OP t1_j5vdm7b wrote

Thank you for the advice. I am actually hoping to do exactly that and suggest to the new tenants if I can that they fight for new windows and new flooring. The flooring is original and beautiful, but it's in poor condition and has terrible insulation. The problem is I will probably never find out who has rented my unit and even if I do before they move in, once they sign a lease they lose a lot of bargaining power.


Jumpy-Natural4868 t1_j5uddhb wrote

that's called business.

The flip side is that when you are working for a business you get token raises every year, and the way to really get a salary increase is to find another job with a competitor.


blondiebell OP t1_j5ufxk7 wrote

I dont misunderstand business, but its awful to me that housing is being run as a business in the first place and that it's been left unchecked for so long. It's fine to make a profit on an asset, but this assest is someones home and should come with different rules that protect the tenant. Why is this situation okay, just because its "business as usual"?


pghhotfire t1_j5uhjdq wrote

It’s not immoral. If you own a home, for instance, and go to sell it, wouldn’t you try to sell it for as much as you can? What about the landlord/property owner who has an obligation to their family to provide for them to the best they can.


blondiebell OP t1_j5uqyhw wrote

But that's the thing, why was it ever allowed for your sole income to be someone else's home?? Investments come with risk and your only investment should never be something that can fail so easily and devastate you financially if it does. That's investing 101, diversify.

If I am selling a home I presumably used it for long enough that the land it's on increased in value and I could make a profit from its sale, but that profit will likely go into the cost of a new home (that's also increased in value) or retirement if I am downsizing and on a fixed income. The sale of a house isnt meant to be just for profit and it why many people, myself included have a problem with flippers.

Landlords are allowed to exist, people will always have a need for rentals, but no landlord should be allowed to gouge their renters for their own profits because someones home isnt like any other investments. Investing in rentals should come with very strict rules that protect the renter.


pghhotfire t1_j5uryb4 wrote

It seems to be a philosophical difference and I respect your position. I disagree, but I respect it.


blondiebell OP t1_j5usmt5 wrote

If you're willing to dive further, I'm curious what your personal justifications are for your position. What has brought you to your current opinions on the matter of for profit housing?


pghhotfire t1_j5uvyo4 wrote

Two things can be right. I don’t know how affordable/subsidized housing works. And the gentrification of neighborhoods often has me wondering, literally, what happened to all those people. And I believe there should be infrastructure in place for access to housing. With that out of the way, real estate is an investment (as well as a place to live if your investment is your house.) and any investment has risks and rewards. I plan on selling my house in a few years. So between now and then I have list of upgrades and improvements I want to make to maximize my return on that investment. Which is moral. And responsible for my family. In the case of your landlord, maybe they are in the same position. They took a substantial risk in investing in that property and now or trying to maximize that return…also moral; also responsible.


blondiebell OP t1_j5v1ca8 wrote

To an extent I can see how you came to your conclusions. My question would then be how do you feel about this happening in other industries?

We're seeing this all around right now, but let's use the example of electric/power. You have to have it in your home and for most places there is only one option for provider DLC. If you found out your electric bill went up $200 because the power company in Cleveland started charging more to their customers would you be upset?


blondiebell OP t1_j5v9rri wrote

Glad to see that spending is up for HUD and many of their programs. Unfortunately I worry that a lot will go towards mitigating the severe situation left by COVID and not the issues that existed beforehand. A big one is that while they are increasing the value and number of vouchers available to those that qualify, they are not putting enough into regulating the quality and safety of the properties themselves that take vouchers or the number of properties that do.


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5vdkb4 wrote

I like to point out to people that private for profit companies are just as wasteful and awful as government housing projects and they build really low quality apartments and houses. I also like to point out democrats raise taxes on the richest people to pay for welfare while republicans will never do that. Republicans are more likely to keep rich peoples taxes lower by not only underfunding welfare but also keeping middle class taxes higher


blondiebell OP t1_j5vfzru wrote

Hahaha you actually made me laugh out loud with your first line 😂😂

You are absolutely off base if you consider for profit housing failures comparable to HUD failures. Your own links point to the exact fact that HUD programs and properties fail by design because the Republicans in power let them. It is a never ending cycle of wanting to profit so they make affordable housing inaccessible, withholding funding for government housing up keep, letting that gov housing fail, and then pointing to its failing as a reason to keep for profit housing.

The certainly both have issues, but they are wildly different and can not and should not be compared by the same measures.


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5vhuey wrote

They “luxury” buildings sprouting up around the city are butt ugly and paper thin. Ryan houses are quite bad also. The terraces in the hill and the new housing in Larimar looks decent. Some of the rehab work by Trex is really good.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vk9en wrote

We agree there. They are shitty for the same reason every nee thing is shitry quality, greed. Lower build cost means more profit when they charge their obscene "luxury" prices.


[deleted] t1_j5wjfar wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j5wlclx wrote

Actually they exist because they are supposed to be temporary, whether it's to give the renter the ability to save for a home or if they were only planning to stay in the area a short time like a work contract or school. Housing was never meant to for profit.


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5uxvis wrote

It’s been debated in this country since the Great Depression and the pendulum swings back and forth over the years for how much people want the government to get involved in the housing market. When blacks were not allowed in public housing, most of the country supported public housing. Once desegregation happened in the 60s many white people switched to supporting Republicans which are heavily on the side of no public housing or rent controls and they seem to keep getting elected so I don’t know what else to do besides vote for a democrat that might try to fix the issue.


blondiebell OP t1_j5v80hm wrote

What even is your point, if you have one? Racism killed support public housing so we should just accept that the racist side has a point for why we shouldn't have it..

The only arguments I've seen for weakening public housing is because for profit landlords would lose profits.

Unfortunately, we agree that individuals cant do much but vote for the people we best believe will fight for those changes.


ktxhopem3276 t1_j5vaecv wrote

My main point is vote against the racists but I’m mostly just rambling. Libertarians say government is inherently corrupt and private sector will solve the problem more efficiently. Some middle class working families think democrats will tax them to pay for housing for lazy people. These aren’t my views but I’m just pointing out the arguments you might hear from some people so you can prepare yourself accordingly to think of ideas that will win over more support for what you want to see happen


blondiebell OP t1_j5vcl5b wrote

I appreciate the concern, it is important to prepare for the arguments you can forsee when this topic comes up. Forever and always, voting against racists is the right thing to do.


Jumpy-Natural4868 t1_j5uhg6c wrote

If there was no profit motive, there would be no landlords and no housing to rent.

I'm not an unfettered capitalist myself, but it was quite nice for the landlord to limit rent increases for you during your time there, because it seems that the market was sending signals that the landlord could have raised the rent much more (and added fees) for the times you were there and renewed.


pierogie_65 t1_j5uk126 wrote

you’re still thinking within the current system. capitalism demands that there be a ‘profit motive’ for every facet of our society. every sector, education, medical, housing… all profit oriented and are all degrading systems in the US. housing has become a get rich quick scheme and has driven more folks into houslessness, increased 3.1% since 2020. a lot of these folks are disabled and have income caps that will kick them off disability if they make over a certain amount, rendering them ineligible for a lot of housing opportunities. our current system will always place profit above people, and the result is every day folks like you normalizing and perpetuating that narrative.


blondiebell OP t1_j5ujexs wrote

Profit itself isn't a problem, it's the degree that landlords are able to make profit at the expense of their tenants and society as a whole.

It's happening everywhere, price gouging is seemingly the norm right now because there are little to no checks in place to stop a business from charging what every they want. With something as important as housing it is leaving people desperate and sometimes even homeless.

I'm not ungrateful to feel I got a good deal, it's just important to me that more people see the reality of prices increasing this dramatically for renters. I can afford a house only because I got lucky on rent and could save, that feels like it will be near impossible for the very next person who lives there after me, it sucks.


KentuckYSnow t1_j5wwfvr wrote

They aren't getting screwed, you were getting a deal. Get some perspective. Utilities have gone up a huge amount, it's only fair to pay your own.


blondiebell OP t1_j5x3dfa wrote

So if utilities went up and now the cost is on the tenants why is the rent also increasing %15?


KentuckYSnow t1_j5yixcr wrote

Have you tried to hire someone to fix anything lately? Did you leave the apartment in a condition that required zero upkeep or repair? If you were paying minimal increases for several years it's going to be behind market value. Rents don't and shouldn't stay tethered to what the last person paid


blondiebell OP t1_j5yx6rc wrote

I've discussed this in another post, but my reply boils down to "market price" is BS when it comes to something someone needs for survival. The literal purpose of the annual rent increase for a current tenant is to keep up with expected inflation while maintaining current profits for the company. If the rent jumps 15% and inflation is only up 5% then the company is just price gouging because they can and it is immoral and should be made illegal.


According-Activity10 t1_j5wkc9d wrote

Electric baseboard heating is the worst. We got BIG TIME FUCKED OVER by our last landlord (among some other bullshit, she was renting to her grandson on the other side of the home and he sucked in 1000 ways) and we had a $1,200 electric bill last winter. It was probably not warmer than 60 degrees that month.

I will tell you there was a lot of shady shit but the electric bill was one of the worst parts.


blondiebell OP t1_j5wmkkw wrote

Sorry you can relate, glad you are out of that situation


According-Activity10 t1_j5wosu2 wrote

It's just the most unbelievablely bad way to heat a place and it feels more dangerous. I can't understand for the life of me why anyone would install that.


blondiebell OP t1_j5wpjp5 wrote

They do it because its cheaper than putting in forced air heat when the radiators quit :/ especially when the tenant is paying for it


cardinaljester t1_j5wo2ap wrote

I just got a renewal offer today that told me my rent increased by 30% Immediately submitted my move out date after that bs lol.


blondiebell OP t1_j5woy71 wrote

Gosh, I'm sorry they hit you with that.

Like no one gets a 30% raise in salary so how do they expect you to afford that.


InevitablePersimmon6 t1_j5voz56 wrote

This is what they do everywhere. Back in 2008 I moved into a one-bedroom apartment in Brookline and my rent was only $525/month plus electric. By the time I bought a house in 2014 and moved, my rent had gone up to $675/month with no renovations. Once I gave notice I was moving, they came in and put in new floors and counters and charged the next person $850/month. It was crazy to me.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vpyl3 wrote

It is true that this is a problem everywhere. At least it seems they bothered to make some upgrades with the floors and counters for the next person.


InevitablePersimmon6 t1_j5vqc0q wrote

They took the carpets out. Left the old windows and bathroom stuff though so it didn’t seem like much to me. I remember asking them if I could get upgraded too since they kept raising my rent and they told me that they would as long as I was willing to pay “new tenant” rates. Landlords are a racket.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vt469 wrote

Oof, good on you for trying and asking. I'm sorry they were disagreeable.


[deleted] t1_j5yihuj wrote

Price of a Latte vs actual


blondiebell OP t1_j5ywlzu wrote

? Are you trying to draw a comparison between a cup of coffee and an apartment...


[deleted] t1_j5zp964 wrote

No but if you can pay it do so if you earned $$ to enjoy Free Latte payment


blondiebell OP t1_j5zvid4 wrote

A home is something people need to survive, it is not at all comparable to a latte and should not be priced as such.

HUD programs are great when they are funded and managed properly, but a big issue right now is that those vouchers can not be used in all areas and can be denied by any landlord. There is a massive shortage of available units for users of the voucher programs because of stigma, discrimination, and poor management of the system that oversees existing HUD properties.


[deleted] t1_j60vhpv wrote

Arguing with people who are high and have grand thoughts & idea’s is a losing battle. Just subsidize their pig styes and ignored them until they start cutting off their privates in protest, then you can laugh at them” someone said recently at a Pittsburgh Comedy club…I found it insulting.


blondiebell OP t1_j60xh97 wrote



[deleted] t1_j612dt3 wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j61cfg7 wrote

Your last comment made little sense, is the whole thing a quote ? You say you found it insulting, but your takes so far suggest that you choose to be at a comedy show where "jokes" like that are expected


[deleted] t1_j61cu79 wrote

I did not ask what jokes were going to be told. I didn’t laugh but most everyone else did for a good 3 minute’s .


blondiebell OP t1_j61f1z8 wrote

What an unpleasant group


[deleted] t1_j61fc44 wrote

Then some Trans person came on and was really raunchy and the crowd laughed a that too. Go figure ?


[deleted] t1_j5wbpqi wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j5wcu01 wrote

Their price increases? Yeah it is laughably ridiculous


[deleted] t1_j5wj4yi wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j5wk3br wrote

Ah you're being intentionally obtuse...

Price increases are normal as costs go up. This is across the board price inflation and record profits at the expense of someones home.


pedantic_comments t1_j5ux902 wrote

I feel bad for you being forced to live in that desirable, historic neighborhood with negligible rent increases, OP, and I look forward to your next post about how your home inspector, the seller and any contractor you hire are all also immoral crooks.



blondiebell OP t1_j5v6eme wrote

God forgive me for being happy I got a good deal and also upset that the next person doesn't....


Redditmedaddy69 t1_j5v61cv wrote

No offense but if you've been paying close to 2k/mo to live in a 2br in highland park you've been part of the problem for several years now....


blondiebell OP t1_j5vai3k wrote

Ah yes, me, who could only afford it with a roommate and co-signer, am the root of the housing crisis....


[deleted] t1_j5vf4e4 wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j5vjtbt wrote

There is this wonderful thing that the government has access to which is a company's income records. That's where they have to disclose those details of their revenue and their costs. Have you seen those numbers? Do you know their profits? Do you know the increase year after year of those profits?

You sound like a child.

If you don't know those numbers then you have no idea why they are charging what they are charging. But we collective know they are increasing their prices over the increase in costs because their PROFIT IS INCREASING!!

Just because someone will pay what they charge doesn't mean shit when it is a survival need like water, medication, and HOUSING.


[deleted] t1_j5vmo19 wrote



blondiebell OP t1_j5vryux wrote

It's like you are being purposely obtuse.

For you, a single landlord, perhaps you arent price gouging and seeing record profits, great you might be one of the good ones.

But when you look at big companies and realestate investment firms you see those enormous numbers in their PROFITS.

I don't need to know their operating costs, I dont need to know their revenue, all I need to know is that their profit it INCREASING!

If you charged someone $100 rent last year, your operating costs were $60, and you made $40 fine. Next year you charge $120 because your costs went up $80, your profit is still $40. Fine!

But if you charge $250 the next year just because you feel like it and your costs still only went up $20 to now $100, you just made $150 profit for no reason. You are now an asshole!

Good business means you are including in your costs savings for improvements and emergencies. If a company sees an up in their costs and then ups their prices their profit wouldn't increase it would remain steady. Instead we see massive leaps in profit and that should be unacceptable.


[deleted] t1_j5uznzo wrote

It’s a business not a charity 💝


blondiebell OP t1_j5v9w5p wrote

Why? Why is a home allowed to be a business when you need it to survive?


[deleted] t1_j5vaj3c wrote

Well many survive quite nicely paying little to nothing for there survival. It’s up too you.Here you go to free survival homes


blondiebell OP t1_j5vd21y wrote

Ah yes, survival is all we plebs should hope for. Thank you for reminding us that we should never expect more than survival out of life. Shame on anyone not living in survival housing for pointing out the harmful practices that keep other people in survival housing.


[deleted] t1_j5vdwz5 wrote

Go to school, avoid drugs and alcohol, get a trade or go to college . And you can live quite nicely. It’s pretty simple unless you are to assume things should be given to you when want it.


blondiebell OP t1_j5vijde wrote

Ah so if I wasnt born to a family in a good school district, had an illness that put me on a medication that led me to drug addiction, couldn't physically do a trade or afford college I should just suffer??

Nah, your human right is access to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We went so far as to put that in our constitution. By right of being born I should be allowed access to the means to survival AND the opportunity to do more. If I choose to do more, sure I can have nicer/better things, but I shouldn't have to suffer or struggle to survive. If you disagree with then you should look at who told you that wasn't deserved by everyone by birth right.


da_london_09 t1_j5zwsd1 wrote

> Nah, your human right is access to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We went so far as to put that in our constitution.

Um, yeah, that's not in the Constitution. That was the Declaration of Independence, which was written by the Continental Congress, ironic since it consisted of a bunch of white property owners.

That document really doesn't have much to do with our current government which came into its own in 1789 under the actual Constitution.


blondiebell OP t1_j600te3 wrote

Fair enough, that exact phrasing was in the Declaration of Independence and not the Constitution. The Constitution does however offer protection for life, liberty and property in the 14th amendment.

I am far from a constitutionalist and do not subscribe to the idea that it is infallible, but the point stands that we deserve to do more than just survive. This notion that housing isn't a human right is insane, and far too many people make concessions for land and wealth hoarding entities just because "that's how it works".


da_london_09 t1_j601ujt wrote

> 14th amendment

The Constitution basically says that the government (post civil war) cannot stand in your way or deprive you of your 'things' without due process. But it stops short at any mention of the government being responsible for a persons home (or lack of)


blondiebell OP t1_j603wpf wrote

Yeah, but in there is that little word "life", that's generally understood as the things you need to, ya know LIVE.

You are not supposed to be able to deprive someone of food, water, or shelter, but we are currently at a fucked up place in society because we have allowed capitalism to make that possible. We make going to school mandatory (fine) but we take away food if the child/family cant pay, we let companies reroute and pollute water systems at the expense of people down stream, and people like yourself sit back and think it's fine that for profit companies gouge prices on housing leaving people without shelter.

Sure you can say the Constitution is there to protect people from the government, but the whole purpose of having said government is to benefit the people. It has failed massively by allowing greed to go unchecked and support networks fail.