‘The majority of the community is cost-burdened’ | Charlotte renters worry about increasing costs

In North Carolina, more than 45% of renters are feeling the impact, and in South Carolina, it's more than 48%.

new report by Harvard showed a record number of renters are cost-burdened. That means 30% of their income is spent on rent and utilities. In North Carolina, more than 45% of renters are feeling the impact, and in South Carolina, it’s more than 48%.

Sitting on Florence Anderson’s front porch is one of her favorite activities. 

“I couldn’t have found a better place,” Anderson said. “I just love this place, I call this my Little House on the Prairie.”

Anderson loves to take in the sounds of the J.T. Williams neighborhood, just north of Uptown, but she fears her favorite place could soon be gone.

“When I moved in, they said it’s an up-and-coming area, so I’m hoping it doesn’t get sold from under me,” she said.

Anderson worries her neighborhood is headed in the same direction as the rest of Charlotte. Rent prices are climbing by the day, and it’s already hard to make it by. She is worried about what could happen if her home is sought after as a gold mine by developers.

“I’d probably be homeless. I’d be homeless, not probably, I’d be in a tent,” Anderson said. 

The report shows many people are finding themselves in the same situation as Anderson. It’s been a 10% jump from 2019 and the highest number recorded. 

Jessica Moreno with Action NC fights for rent stabilization and affordable housing in Charlotte. 

“The majority of the community is cost-burdened,” Moreno said. “We see how rent goes up consistently.” 

She has continued to call on city leaders to push for solutions so people like Anderson can stay put. 

“Housing model that is de-commodified, housing model that is not going to up and down and value and will allow communities to be safe,” Moreno said.

Charlotte Mayor Pro-Tem Dante Anderson said a lot is going on behind the scenes with Charlotte City Council and they are working to help those who are struggling while also promoting development. She said there needs to be a good balance.  

“We allocate dollars to families who are in need,” Dante Anderson said. 

Aside from the funding set aside by the City, programs and nonprofits are working to help people. 

“First, you can come to the city website, and search programs, we have the HOMES program, you can call 311,” Dante Anderson said. “We have an app that every resident can download, you can search for assistance,”

The county also has a set of resources to help. 

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