Rental rates reaching new highs in Los Angeles area

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A new report Wednesday finds the cost of renting in Los Angeles is skyrocketing with no signs of slowing down, and many renters are feeling the pain.

More demand, fewer vacancies and soaring rent prices seems to be a trend in the L.A. metro area.

A new market report by Marcus and Millichap reveals that for those wanting to live in the city, it is going to be pricey.

According to the study, the average cost of rent on the west side is about $2,700, which is up nearly 7 percent from last year.

Santa Monica and Marina Del Rey cost over $3,000, while rent in the San Fernando Valley jumped more than 15 percent to about $1,400 a month.

"When I was looking in L.A., I saw a studio without a kitchen or a bathroom for like $1,000, and I was like 'that's absurd,'" said Gerardo Vargas of Claremont.

Instead, Vargas chose to rent in the Inland Empire's city of Claremont, which is a daily three-hour commute

"I had to move out of L.A. and go somewhere further away so I can get somewhere that's at least a livable wage, I mean, livable rent for me," he said.

Downtown has seen more high-end luxury apartments with average monthly rents of about $2,100.

Alba Valladares, a caretaker, said she's noticed the upward trend. She and her three daughters live in a two bedroom apartment downtown and barely make ends meet.

"I work part time and my mom works part time. We're basically working just to pay rent... doesn't include bills, food, etc," said Karla Valladares, Alba's daughter.

"Major tech companies are coming and locating here - that's been the biggest driver," said Kevin Miller of Westside Rentals.

Miller suggested that some alternatives for the most exclusive locations are to look for bargains in the most sought-out cities.

Meanwhile, experts in real estate expect rent to rise about 4.8 percent in Los Angeles County for the remainder of 2015 to an average of over $1,800 a month - more than doubling the rate of inflation.
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