Friday, August 12 2022

ELHKORN, Wis. — Kelly Richards cherishes her time with her 4-year-old son, Asher.

As the two play Connect Four at their Elkhorn apartment, Richards has something on her mind. Soon it will cost much more for Richards to live in his apartment.

“Our rent is going up $150 a month. I’m sure there are a lot of people whose raise is unfortunately much more than that,” Richards said.

For Richards, it’s unclear why the rent suddenly goes up. She said she was not aware of any significant upgrades or renovations to her resort.

Although Richards said she thinks she will be able to manage the expenses, it will likely affect her savings account.

“My goal is to eventually move from here and move into a house with my son and have a yard, but when things keep going up, I feel like it won’t be anytime soon. “, said Richards.

Richards is not alone. According to the data of the rental site Rent.comnationwide rental prices have increased by 25% between 2021 and 2022.

While Wisconsin has been less impacted than most other states — seeing only about an 8.5% year-over-year increase — tenants such as Richards are feeling the impact.

Shawanna Lindenberg is the housing service manager for Community Advocates, based in Milwaukee. This is a group that helps renters find affordable housing and overcome landlord challenges.

Lindenberg said she’s seen a recent spike in customers reporting that their rent is going up significantly.

“In the past, we just saw these minimal increases that followed the cost of living. So the rent can go up $20 next year and now we’re seeing where those percentages are really going up,” Lindenberg said.

Lindenberg said a concerning trend is that many landlords are demanding higher incomes to rent vacant apartments.

As for Richards, she plans to stay in her apartment.

She said she has explored several nearby options, but the selection of comparable apartments in Elkhorn and Walworth County is limited.

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