Baltimore Sun

Feeling the pinch

With high demand for housing, tenants in Baltimore and beyond are faced with soaring rental costs — helping to drive inflation

- By Lorraine Mirabella KARL MERTON FERRON/ BALTIMORE SUN

Sallie Whitney had no plans to move from an apartment in a city neighborho­od she loves for its walkabilit­y and access to transporta­tion. But when it came time to renew the lease on her one-bedroom unit in Brewers Hill, she was shocked to see her rent jump 15%, by $300 a month. With more of her retirement income going toward rent, she’ll be forced to consider other options. So far, she has found limited choices.

“I know I can’t afford to stay, but where can I go?” said Whitney, who is retired on a government pension and works part-time. “My situation is not dire, but because it went from quite comfortabl­e to precarious in the space of a year, I can’t help but wonder what is happening to everybody else in Baltimore faced with these increases.”

Rental costs are soaring nationwide, helping to drive the overall rate of inflation to 9.1% in June, the U.S. Department of Labor reported earlier this month. The increase in the Consumer Price Index represente­d the biggest year-over-year jump since the end of November 1981, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said.

The rent portion of the index rose 0.8 percent from May to June, the largest monthly increase since April 1986 and

 ?? ?? Now that her landlord is raising her rent by $300 a month, Sallie Whitney is looking for another place to live — one that she can afford on her retirement pension. Whitney said she contacted management about the increase and was told some rents jumped nearly 40%. She has not been able to find a comparable unit with adequate storage space.
Now that her landlord is raising her rent by $300 a month, Sallie Whitney is looking for another place to live — one that she can afford on her retirement pension. Whitney said she contacted management about the increase and was told some rents jumped nearly 40%. She has not been able to find a comparable unit with adequate storage space.

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