Movin’ on out? High cost of living is top concern for Angelenos

UCLA survey finds for renters especially, leaving LA is a strong consideration
April 30, 2019 09:00AM

The cost of living in LA has some considering a move

For Los Angeles County residents, it’s not the economy. The high cost of living — particularly housing — has become the top concern.

According to a new UCLA survey, L.A. County homeowners are generally happy with their healthcare, economy and the state of race relations, but are not at all pleased with the cost of living, according to the L.A. Times.

And amid L.A.’s affordable housing crisis, those escalating costs now weigh more heavily than they did three years ago. The survey, which scored satisfaction on a 100-point scale, found an eight-point drop in satisfaction from 2016 to 2019. UCLA surveyed 1,400 county residents.

Housing was a key contributor to those feelings ­— for the first time, a majority of respondents said that housing is the most important factor in overall satisfaction, the Times reported.

Multifamily property owners have benefited from high rent growth over the last several years, but those same rising prices have taken a toll on tenants. According to a recent report, L.A. has one of the highest percentages of rent-burdened households nationwide, which refers to tenants who pay more than 30 percent of their income on rent.

For the UCLA study, about 70 percent of respondents who rent said they or their close friends and relatives have thought about leaving L.A. for somewhere cheaper. That number dropped to about 57 percent when including homeowners as well.

While overall housing prices and rent growth have slowed across the country — the first quarter especially — that can be attributed in part because overall pricing was already at its upper limit, experts have said. [LAT]Dennis Lynch