Soaring rents are damaging the city we love
Portland rents have increased more than 40% in the last five years, causing financial hardship to people across the city and forcing many long-term residents to move to outlying towns to find affordable rents. It also means that a large proportion renters in the city are insecure in their housing, with the ever-present threat of a rent increase preventing meaningful long-term planning. These changes ripple through the economy and the community in disastrous ways: financial reserves are spent, children have to move school districts, and disabled and elderly people have their lives uprooted. Without adequate workforce housing, our businesses -- largely focused around small businesses and service industry positions at the restaurants and hotels -- lack an accessible workforce.
HOW WILL RENT STABILIZATION HELP?
Rent stabilization will allow renters to feel secure in their homes, begin to build up financial reserves, and make long-term economic plans. It will also have positive economic ripple effects that will strengthen the whole community and our economy. Housing security ensures that the children of renters can remain in a single district, that vulnerable citizens with mental or physical health conditions can heal without having to face eviction, and that local businesses will have the workforce that they need to grow. This is not just about improving renters' lives: it's about rejecting the false dilemma of scarcity and showing that a resilient, vital city includes everyone.