'I should not have to struggle': Renters battle to find apartments in Raleigh's hot housing market

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Wednesday, July 6, 2022
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A July report from ApartmentList.com shows rent in Raleigh has increased 1.8 percent from June and almost 18 percent from a year ago.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Keiara Brown is a mother of four and trying to find a new apartment for her family in the City of Oaks. Her lease is up at the end of the month. She says her landlord raised the rent and she's not resigning. Brown is hoping to find something better, but keeps hitting walls.

She says renting in Raleigh is just as competitive and exhausting as purchasing a home.

"I've spent about $500 just on just applications," said Keiara Brown

A July report from ApartmentList.com shows Raleigh rent has increased 1.8 percent from June and almost 18 percent from a year ago.

Brown is looking to spend about $1,800 a month and she says that's isn't enough to find something good in the Capital City.

"I should not have to struggle to find housing for my family. I make good money," said Brown.

Brown says she lost some wages during the pandemic and did have a few late rent payments.

She wishes property management groups would take into considerations the string of hardships people have been facing the last few years.

"(There's) inflation and people still recovering from lost wages and lost jobs and deceased loved ones," said Brown.

There are programs to help people get in places and stay there.

The Wake County Hope Program provides rent and utility assistant to low-income renters experiencing financial hardships due to COVID-19.

The City of Raleigh says it's committed to creating 5,700 affordable housing units by 2026 in addition to the affordable rental properties already around the city.

Brown has looked into some of these options and says there are roadblocks.

"The waitlist can be a year. I don't have a year," she said.

Brown is considering to temporarily move her family into a hotel while she continues searching.

"That's not where I want to have my family, but in the interim (until I get) everything situated that's where we have to be," said Brown.