JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville is making national headlines -- and not in such a good way. The city’s housing crisis was highlighted on CBS News’ 60 Minutes Sunday.
The American dream of owning a home is becoming just that, a dream. With more people flocking to Jacksonville, homeownership is becoming less attainable than ever before.
CBS’ 60 Minutes talked to a young couple in Jacksonville facing steep rent rates who feel they may never own a home.
“Now our dream is unattainable. It’s disturbing,” Brittney House said.
CBS reports large companies like Toronto-based Tricon Residential are buying and fixing up homes, then listing them for rent at up to 40 percent more.
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Tricon argues market rents must reflect market prices. The company has become one of the largest owners of single-family homes in the US, owning about 30,000 of them, many of which are in the Sunbelt.
Tricon’s CEO says corporate landlords represent just two percent of all single-family housing. But Redfin tells CBS in places like Jacksonville, Atlanta, and Charlotte, investors are buying almost 30 percent of the homes on the market.
Jacksonville realtor Mike Boyle says people from out of state are also driving up the prices. “There is no state income tax, there is a lot lower property tax; we do have nicer weather than most places,” Boyle explained.
His clients from more expensive places like Los Angeles and New York can sell their houses for much more than they’d pay for property in Northeast Florida, making it easier for them to buy in Florida and locking out other potential buyers.
Right now, demand is so high, Boyle says there aren’t enough homes for sale in Northeast Florida.
“Usually there’s like ten thousand houses... all the time I’ve been a realtor,” Boyle explained. “And it’s been two thousand or less for a year-and-a-half, two years, so that’s less than fifty percent, that’s like twenty percent.”
Below you can watch 60 Minutes’ Lesley Stahl report on how a lack of construction in the 2010s has created a nationwide housing crisis, and the opportunistic Wall Street firms that have stepped in.
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