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Renters’ Guide to Gentrification: What You Need to Know

Two Buildings, One Exterior is Renovated and the Other in DisrepairIf you’re a renter, there’s a great chance you’ve heard about gentrification and the ways it can affect your life. But what is gentrification? What do renters need to know about it? In this blog post, we will touch on the basics of gentrification and how it affects renters differently from homeowners. We’ll specifically deliver tips and tricks for renters struggling with rising rents or being displaced by gentrification.

Gentrification Defined

Gentrification is the process of renovating and improving a neighborhood, characteristically one that has been in decline, and making it more enticing to higher-income residents. Gentrification can unfold quickly or slowly, but certainly, it almost always raises complex social issues. The reason for this is that the gentrification of a neighborhood can contribute to rising property values and rents, as well as an influx of new businesses and amenities. Even though these changes can be positive, innumerable disadvantages go along with them.

Gentrification’s benefits include reducing crime and increasing investment in neglected areas. Homeowners may suddenly find increased property values and new or plenty of people moving into the area. For renters, moving into a newly gentrified area could see benefits from being part of a community undergoing rapid change and growth, which can feel exhilarating. Renters can similarly identify great deals on newly renovated rentals, particularly if the area is just at the very start of gentrification.

Except, gentrification can also displace long-time residents who can no longer afford the increased rent. Renters may sadly encounter that rising rents have priced them out of an area they’ve lived in for years, which can be hard to deal with. Other probable disadvantages of gentrification include the loss of community character and the feeling that outsiders are taking over a neighborhood.

How Gentrification Affects Renters Differently from Homeowners

Renters are more particularly at risk of displacement from gentrification since they don’t have the same protections as homeowners. For instance, landlords can raise rents to what the current market will allow; these increases can be huge if the market is very desirable. And if you’re renting from a landlord who wants to sell the property, you could further be obliged to move. In contrast, gentrification has minimal effect on homeowners, who are less likely to move out of gentrifying areas. Property owners oftentimes stand to benefit the most from the gentrification process.

Tips for Renters Facing Gentrification

If you’re a renter in a neighborhood that is gentrifying, there are plenty of things you can execute to try to remain in your home. More particularly, get to know your rights as a tenant, and see to it you’re advised on all the latest laws and regulations. You should therefore try to build relationships with your landlord or Suwanee property manager, that way they are more likely to work with you if rent increases turn out to be a real headache. One last matter, prepare to advocate for yourself and other tenants in your neighborhood if you detect signs of displacement (such as evictions or rent hikes).

Gentrification is a complex issue, and it’s one that renters need to appreciate. If you’re grappling with rising rents or the threat of displacement, keep in mind that you’re not alone, and a lot of people and organizations can help you.


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