People on Reddit are slamming a 200-square-foot San Diego 'shed' that rents for more than $1,000 a month, but it's just the latest example of America's unaffordable housing market
- A 200-square-foot studio in San Diego, California, was renting for $1,100 a month last week.
- The listing, recently reduced to $1,050 a month, was spotted by Redditors and posted on r/SanDiego, where many users slammed the unreasonably high asking price for the "shed."
- But according to a broker with the listing agency, JD Property Management and Realty, the unit's pricing is "not uncommon" and other units around the area are comparable.
- Indeed, in many areas across the country are facing a housing crisis, forcing many renters to consider renting $1,200 bunk beds, $2,000 single rooms in shared houses, and even illegal "micro-units" with 6-foot ceilings for $600 monthly.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
The apartment, located at 4735 1/2 Oregon Street in San Diego, California, is currently listed by JD Property Management and Realty. The listing describes the unit as an "updated studio with 1 bath and small kitchen" in the University Heights neighborhood. San Diegans on Reddit were outraged to see that the tiny unit, which many of them deemed a "shed," was asking $1,100 per month to rent.
"Someone is really charging people $1,100 to live in a shed! And they want you to have a 650+ credit score too," Reddit user terrificheretic posted, referencing the listing's stated rental requirements (income of 2.5 times the monthly rent, a FICO score at or above 650, no legal evictions on record, and "good rental references").
"I'm all about charging market value but this seems a tad... over-valued, to say at the least," one commenter wrote.
"I was making $8.50 an hour and my first apartment was $190 a month. It was cool 40 years ago. I can't believe how difficult it is for people now. We have f----- up the middle class," another commented.
Realtors say this pricing isn't unusual
But Joshua Dillon, a broker with JD Property Management and Realty, says this pricing is "not uncommon."
He noted that the "typical/average" one-bedroom in the larger San Diego County rents for between $1,300 and $1,500 per month and that the asking price of the Oregon Street studio (now reduced to $1,050 a month) "is not much more than people are paying to rent rooms within houses ($800-$900)."
Ranking and review site Niche puts the county's median rent at $1,467.
Dillon also clarified that the apartment is not a shed, despite its shed-like appearance: "This unit has its own electric meter, its own address, etc., and has been here since the end of World War II per the owner, due to the housing shortage at that time."
The "shed" on Oregon Street is just one symptom of a nation-wide issue
The housing crisis is on clear display across the US, particularly with the astronomical cost of living in areas like New York City, San Francisco, and Palo Alto.
Business Insider's Libertina Brandt previously reported that the median rent for a Manhattan studio apartment in July and August hit $2,700, while Brooklyn's median face rent hit an all-time high of $3,000 per month in June. Brandt separately reported in September that the tiniest apartment in San Francisco, just 161 square feet, was asking over $2,200 a month in rent. Renters in San Francisco are even dishing out $1,200 a month to rent a single bunk bed in co-living buildings and over $2,000 a month to rent rooms in vacant Victorian homes.Landlords in New York City were even caught renting out "micro rooms" - illegal sub-units with no windows, sprinklers, or fire-safety systems - with ceilings reported to be a mere 4.5 to 6 feet tall.
Quinisha Jackson-Wright, a freelance journalist for Business Insider, wrote about how her rent more than doubled - from $800 a month to $2,000 - when she moved from the Midwest to Santa Barbara, California.
Recognizing the issues, some states are attempting to tackle the affordable housing crisis: California recently became the third state (after Oregon in March and New York in June) to pass a rent control bill in an effort to curtail the problem. And tech companies are attempting to find solutions as well; Microsoft announced in January that it would pledge $500 million to help alleviate Seattle's growing housing crisis in light of the city's influx of tech companies, Business Insider previously reported.