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High Cost of Housing Drives up Homeless Rates, UCLA Study Finds

An undated photo shows a tent encampment in downtown Los Angeles. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

An undated photo shows a tent encampment in downtown Los Angeles. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Sky-high housing costs are a significant factor behind California’s homeless crisis, according to a new analysis from UCLA.

In a study contained in the latest UCLA Anderson Forecast, released Wednesday, UCLA found that higher median rent and home prices are strongly correlated with more people living on the streets or in shelters. The research backs other studies that have found a similar relationship.

Last year, Zillow released a study that showed a 5% rent hike in L.A. County — where more than 50,000 are estimated to be homeless — would cause 2,000 additional people to lose their homes.

In April, according to Zillow, the median rent for a vacant apartment in the county was $2,462, up 1.9% from the previous year. In 2017, rents climbed an average of 4.3% and in 2016, 6.5%. The median home price in April was $608,800, up 9% from a year earlier.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.