Almost half of all renters in Hamilton, Ontario are living in unaffordable housing, according to a series of reports from the Social Planning and Research Council of Hamilton (SPRC).
The reports revealed that that 45.4% of renter households in Hamilton spend around 30% of their income on housing costs, while 20% spend 50% of their income or more.
Sara Mayo, social planner of geographic information service at SPRC, told CBC News that part of the problem is that rental prices are surpassing inflation rates.
“The housing market is causing a lot of stress and negative situations for lots of people in Hamilton,” Mayo told CBC News. “Not enough attention is paid to the rental market... there's not enough discussion of the negative impacts.”
According to CBC News, one-bedroom rentals in Hamilton’s downtown core have seen the average rents increase by 40% from 2010 to 2018.
Mayo told CBC News that the city struggles with unaffordability despite being seen about as less expensive than other places in the Golden Horseshoe.
“Because Hamilton has 'low rent,' it's seen as 'oh, it's not as much of an issue,'” she told CBC News. “Rents are cheaper here, but incomes are lower in Hamilton, so we still have affordability challenges despite lower rents.”