Real Estate: Renting in Argentina

The number of people renting properties in Argentina in increasing at such a rate that experts are predicting a deficit of housing in the future. A study carried out by the UCA (Universidad Católica Argentina, in English: Catholic University of Argentina) shows a worrying increase in the number of homes occupied by renting tenants. In 2004, 12.8% of households occupied were rented out whereas in 2009 the percentage was 15%: quite a significant increase.

The high number of properties rented could be an indication of problems within families’ budgets and society as a whole. It could show that there is a housing shortage and that is why people are forced to rent, particularly in precarious settlements. Also, it reflects the limited disposable income of families as they have to put a large proportion of their monthly income towards their rent. This in turn also limits families’ ability to save money and contribute to the economy.
According to the report, between 2007 and 2009, the average number of rents paid by tenants rose 62.1% and during the same period, the INDEC recorded a huge increase in the price of renting on the Buenos Aires real estate market.

Prices for rent in Argentina increased the most in homes in towns and settlements with an increase of 97.4%. By contrast, less variation occurred in the urban middle class segment, where the increase was around 51.5%.  The report concludes that a process of regression is unfortunately occurring in Argentina and the Buenos Aires real estate market. Rent prices are increasing because the lowest income families do not meet requirements for rental housing in urban areas, as opposed to the middle classes who have other options and may even have access to mortgage credit.

The Catholic University of Argentina (UCA) believes that this process is closely linked to the increase in slums and illegal settlements in the last decade. Argentina has a huge deficit of housing, which has been exacerbated by the dramatic increase in population and migration in the last few years. There is now high demand for housing units in the poorer areas that led the rent in slums and settlements to go up significantly higher than in urban areas.

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