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9:08 pm, Dec 06
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Rent Surges in DFW as Renters Face Tough Decisions

Real Estate

"For Rent" sign in front of residence. | Image by Feverpitched

Over the past year, rent has been skyrocketing in the DFW area, and there appears to be no end in sight. Renters all over have been getting slapped with lease renewals that have increased by hundreds of dollars.

“The rent here is ridiculous,” said Phil Reed, a resident of Plano for the last ten years. “We’ve never seen rent like this before. I don’t get how they expect us to pay for this kind of increase.”   

Reed recently had to figure out plans to move out of his apartment and find somewhere cheaper to live after his rent was increased around $400.

“This is a hassle for my family and me,” he said. “We don’t want to have to pick up and move. But what choice do we have? We can’t afford it, and it just seems to be no one doing anything about the crazy increases. I already work two jobs now, if I stayed, I would have to pick up a third for sure.”  

The rapidly increasing rent has also affected college students. University of Texas – Dallas students are struggling to find an affordable apartment. They’re competing with young career-enthusiasts moving to the Plano and Richardson area for high-paying jobs in tech and other similar fields.

Back in 2020, renters saw reductions in their payments, and landlords struggled to find tenants. This year was a massive turnaround from such problems, as landlords are now looking to increase prices because of housing demand and COVID-19 restrictions ending.   

The pandemic shifted a lot of people into North Texas. Around thousands have moved there all at once, and it’s driving rent up higher than residents’ paychecks can afford.

“The demand for apartments is relentless,” said Julie Lynch, who is the associate director of the Weitzman Institute of Real Estate at UT Dallas’ Naveen Jindal School of Management. “This last year, we delivered over 36,000 units and each of the prior five years we delivered 40,000 units each year. Despite the increase in how many units we’re delivering, the occupancy levels are at an all-time high at 96.5%.”

According to a report from RealPage, the DFW area had the most demand for apartments in the U.S. between April and June of this year.