Real Estate

Amid high housing costs, how to figure out what you can spend on rent


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There’s often a chasm between theory and practice, what we should do and what we actually do. Yet, when it comes to the long-held advice for renters to not spend more than 30% of their income on housing, the target is increasingly impossible to even try to reach, experts say.

“The old 30% guideline is just unrealistic these days,” said Marc Hummel, a licensed real estate salesperson at Douglas Elliman in New York.

More often, Hummel said, tenants spend 40% of their income, or more, on housing. “With vacancy rates at record lows and rents near some of the highest on record, it’s become increasingly more difficult to spend less,” he said.

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