As a senior living on a fixed income in Santa Clarita, I have become abundantly aware that the lack of rent control is making it impossible for a large population of senior citizens to continue living in their current senior apartments.
We seniors chose where we live because the apartments/rentals were affordable. However, each year the rent increases are as high as $50 to $100 a month, and many of us are unable to remain in our homes.
As seniors on fixed incomes, we are struggling to keep a roof over our heads and food on our tables.
The current market rate for senior living posted March 1, 2017, by the Consumer Housing Information Services for Seniors of the Santa Clarita Valley shows prices for privately owned, one bedroom apartments range from $815 (not accepting applications, one year waiting list) to $1,695.
Two-bedroom apartments range from $1,130 to $1,799. So-called affordable senior apartments range from $946 to $1133.
However, the “affordable” units not only have long waiting lists, they also have an income range of $1,200 – $1,975, causing many to be caught in a “donut hole” of income too high for assistance, with not enough left for ordinary expenses.
Santa Clarita, a city in Los Angeles County, is not alone in this current housing crisis. On March 28, 2017, The Daily News published an article stating of the 40,000 people waiting for Section 8 housing in L.A. County, only 1,000 received vouchers last year, and the housing authority is no longer accepting names for the waiting list.
What will it take for Santa Clarita to “wake up” and realize it is time to impose rent control in our city?