Credit's nearly frozen, so it's hard to buy a house. And heck, even with the real estate meltdown, they're still overpriced around here compared to what you earn, right?
So what to do? You ride it out. You rent. And so does everyone else. And their mother. Which brings us to ...
... 11 straight months of rising rents in Southern California. Awesome, right?
It's not like gas prices aren't high (though they've fallen a little), not to mention the increase in costs for everyday food items like milk.
More than one-in-ten Angelenos is out of work, the recession appears to be back from the dead, and now this?
Rent in SoCal went up 1.4 percent for the average non-home-owner in July, according to the latest Consumer Price Index figures.
The good news? There's still rent control in L.A. if you live in an older building that hasn't been renovated in a long time. And the real estate implosion and economic doldrums did bring rents pretty far down during the recession.
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It's been pretty good for local renters, historically speaking. SoCal CPI shows rents have averaged 1.4% annual rate of gain the past three years vs. 4.5% over the past decade.
Hold on to that apartment, for now.