Breaking News
More () »

When rent breaks the bank: Inside the cost-burden rate of Dallas renters

A new report shows almost half of American renters are spending 30 percent or more of their income on rent.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto
File photo

DALLAS — More than 20 million or 49.7 percent of the almost 41 million renters in the U.S. are considered cost-burdened, according to a recent report from Apartment List.

A household is commonly considered to be “cost-burdened” if the cost of rent takes up 30 percent or more of the household income.

Dallas mirrored many of the national trends around affordability. Almost one in two renters in Dallas pay 30 percent or more of their income on rent – with 21.1 percent, or more than one in five households, paying 50 percent or more.

To see how Dallas fares against the 25 cities with the most renters when it comes to cost-burden rate, click here.

With a cost-burden rate of 47.2 percent, this means there are 482,049 households in Dallas paying 30 percent or more of their income to housing.

From 2017 to 2018, Dallas saw a 1.1 percent increase in cost-burden rate and an addition of 27,292 cost-burdened households.

One of the causes of this increase was the disparity between how fast median rent and median renter income grew. In the one-year period, Dallas renters saw the median rent go up 3.2 percent while income went up only 1.1 percent, according to the report.

From 2008 to 2018, the difference between the two was larger; the median rent increase by 18.7 percent while income grew only 14 percent.

Dallas was also one of only six metros in the nation’s largest 25 metros where renters could comfortably afford median rent with the metro’s median income, the report said.

However, Arlington, Plano and Fort Worth may offer more enticing rates when it comes to cost of living. The three cities outstripped Dallas in this recent study.

Apartment List Chief Economist Igor Popov calls the reversals in positive trends over the past couple years a troubling sign.

“I think it's more of a continuation of some of the troubling trends and affordability that we've been seeing…over the last few years,” said Popov. “We kind of took a little bit of a U-turn to go back in the wrong direction on affordability with this latest census release.”

Popov said that while the data gives good insight on housing trends, there are a lot of nuances that must be understood.

Apartment List sourced the data in its report from the Census American Community Survey.

More on WFAA:

Before You Leave, Check This Out