Average Lowest Rent in SRO Hotels (2015)
If rooms have rents above the welfare shelter rate ($375), low income people who depend on welfare, disability or basic pensions can’t afford to rent them. For the first time in the seven years that CCAP has been doing this survey, average lowest rents have escalated above $500 per month. Meanwhile welfare and disability rates have remained frozen.
As you can see from the table above average rents have increased from $398 in 2009 to $517 in 2015. If rents had increased by only the rate of inflation since 2009, they would only rent for $447. This means that people on welfare who pay the average DTES privately owned SRO rate of $517 a month for SRO rooms, the last resort before homelessness, have only $93 a month left for food, bus fare, clothes, personal hygiene, etc.
In the table above CCAP has conservatively grouped hotels by the lowest rent in the rent range. This means that it is likely that hundreds of people actually pay higher rents than it appears by looking at most of our data. For example, in some cases CCAP has classified a hotel as having rents that begin at $425 even though we know some rooms in the building rent for $550 or more. This also means that there might be longer term tenants who pay a lower rent than reflected by our data.