STOCKTON (CBS13) — The price of housing is going up everywhere, but people in Stockton are being hit especially hard.
The city has seen the second-highest rent increases in the country.
Twenty-year-old Jadin Sharma can barely afford his $1,175 a month rent.
My rent is more than one paycheck. It’s ridiculous. That’s the price of living in California,” Sharma said.
Some tenants said at the end of this lease they’ll see another rent increase.
‘It could be between $50-100,” Sharma said.
Sharma lives at Torcello apartments in Stockton. Rents in the city have seen a 25% increase in the last year, the second-highest increase in rent rates in the U.S. according to Apartment Guide.
“It was really bad for the one bedroom. I believe they were asking $1,400. And that’s a house payment right there,” Maricza Negreti said.
The average rent in Stockton is $1,200, in Sacramento, it’s $1,400. That’s a far cry from the $3,700 in San Francisco. But, that’s one reason why rents are on the rise. More people are becoming super commuters to the Bay Area.
To understand such a rapid increase in rents, real estate broker Michael Blower says you have to take a look back.
“Stockton was at the epicenter of the whole foreclosure crisis. Our values just plummeted during that time, so we really had a big hole to climb out of,” Blower said.
With so much inventory, investors scooped up properties and rented them out, and rents were low. The market has changed significantly, and the number of homes for sale in Stockton is down 33% from this time last year.
“So again, simple supply and demand, that will drive up the cost of rent,” Blower said.
Blower says the rent cap and skyrocketing building costs are discouraging landlords.
For example, the Torcello apartments where Sharma lives were built in 2003 at a cost of $25 million. That’s $83,000 per unit.
Sixteen years later, the same developer is building Stonebrier apartments. The cost is $36 million or $232,000 a unit. That’s a 277% increase.
Blower says lawmakers need to make find ways to make building more affordable.
“When the legislature passes things that are going to help people, they should look at the big picture, overall, decreasing the amount of housing available for people isn’t helping,” Blower said.