Newport This Week Personal
For the editor:
Will Newport become more of a tourist town than we ever could have imagined? Recent studies show that Newport workers have moved out of town and found somewhere else to stay if they don’t sleep with a roommate or have a few college buddies to crash with. Does this even include Newport residents? In a 2021 study, Salve Regina estimates that 800 to 900 students need to find off-campus housing. Putting that aside, it might seem like you’re taking a huge chunk out of Newport’s population. But you have to think about how the population triples, if not more, in the summer.
So let’s just talk about the summer months to be fair. In the summer of 2017, rent prices in Newport were between $839 and $950 for a one-bedroom apartment with an unemployment rate of 3.7%. Now, five years later, that price has jumped about $1,000 more for a one-bedroom apartment with an unemployment rate of 4.3%. percent. So how come it is so difficult with such a small increase in unemployment? It’s because it’s not that people don’t want to work in Newport, it’s that they can’t afford to live in Newport on the salary they receive.
After personally looking for a reasonably priced rental in Newport, I was surely disappointed. The price for a bedroom in Newport with nothing included is $2,000 to start. It’s if you can afford utilities, furniture, or store your stuff in the small square spaces they charge a fortune for.
Can the workers even earn enough to pay the rent? Are owners getting a lot more greedy than expected because of COVID? After going to Zillow, Apartments.com, Trulia and similar housing apps and websites, I found that landlords were doubling or even tripling rental prices in order to make a quick buck from tourists, Airbnbs and Salve students. But are they weeding out the wrong crowd?
As a Newport resident and worker, it is very frustrating to see house prices go up while the amount you earn stays the same. These low prices are what the amount “should be”, almost like the Kelley Blue Book value of your car – it’s never what it’s worth. And these are mainly rentals from May to September, or fully furnished winter rentals to meet the needs of Salve students. Summer prices rise to between $4,000 and $10,000 per month in 2022.
As a worker, there is no way to justify paying so much when the income does not change at all.
quincy williams Newport