Rent control doesn't work
Angie Lopez’ letter speaks to the heart ("Candidates need to support all of Yuma," Aug. 25). We certainly want candidates to have the welfare of all in mind. But rent control, like so many wonderful sounding socialist programs, has disastrous consequences for the very people they purport to protect, and the wealthy always find ways to make it work for them.
It’s impossible to find an apartment in a city that has rent controls. Vacancy rates in cities run at about 1 to 2 percent. No investor wants to build apartments in those markets. If they can’t make a profit, there is no incentive. In cities like Phoenix that do not have rent control, vacancy rates run as high as 15 percent and the free market rules. Landlords compete for tenants at lower rates and with seductive packages.
William Tucker ("How Rent Control Drives out Affordable Housing") says that there is absolutely no disagreement among economists that rent control will reduce the quality and quantity of available housing and cause rents to skyrocket every time.
In New York and San Francisco and Berkley and in a dozen other American cities, those who benefit from rent control legislation are upper- and upper-middle-class professionals. The poor and the elderly are pushed out of the market altogether.
Many cities are trying to repeal rent control legislation, but it seems the more detrimental government programs are, the more difficult it is to get rid of them.
Rent control is a disease in search of a host.
Cora Lee Schingnitz