This is a story that impacts home buyers, but it also hits renters where they live.

Mortgage rates topped 6% this week for the first time since late 2008. A 30-year fixed loan is now more than twice as expensive as a year ago.

“Mortgage rates continued to rise alongside hotter-than-expected inflation numbers this week,” Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said in a statement.

“Although the increase in rates will continue to dampen demand and put downward pressure on home prices, inventory remains inadequate,” he said. “This indicates that while home price declines will likely continue, they should not be large.”

The supply-and-demand disparity will continue making life difficult for would-be home buyers, especially those new to the market.

But it will also weigh on renters.

That’s because high home prices and interest rates have been pushing more people out of the housing market and into rental units.

And, of course, increased demand for rentals is prodding monthly costs higher.

In the first half of the year, average rents nationwide rose to nearly $2,500, according to a recent report from HouseCanary.

California had the country’s highest rents, with the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim area posting a median of $4,664, and San Diego-Carlsbad close behind with a median of $4,617.

Rising rents is just one more headache for working families grappling with the highest consumer prices in 40 years.

Landlords and property owners — many of whom experienced losses during the pandemic — probably would resist any moves toward rent control.

But policymakers will soon have to recognize and address the growing challenge of finding affordable housing.

That is, unless we want to live in communities that teachers, nurses, firefighters and police officers can’t afford. And unless we feel that two-hour commutes are a fair tradeoff for affordable shelter.

Mortgages will only become pricier as the Federal Reserve raises interest rates even more to ease inflation.

The worst, it seems, is still to come.