Speed Reads

The rent is too damn high

Half of New Yorkers pay rent they can't afford

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New Yorkers love to complain about rent increases, but according to a new report, their arguments aren't without merit. A new housing affordability report from Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli shows that more than 50 percent of New York state residents are paying rent above their affordability level.

In 2012, more than 25 percent of rental households paid rents at or above their total household income, which the Census Bureau classifies as "severely housing-cost burdened." According to federal guidelines, housing is considered unaffordable when it consumes more than 30 percent of household income.

Unsurprisingly, the percentages are even higher in New York City neighborhoods, with 57 percent of Bronx residents and 53 percent of Brooklyn residents contributing more than 30 percent of income to housing costs. Maybe Jimmy McMillan really is onto something. --Meghan DeMaria