By Jeniel Lamb
The corporate area of Jamaica, more specifically, Kingston, has become the hub of Jamaica in many ways and because of this many Jamaicans try to live in or as close to Kingston and St Andrew as possible. That, however, means that there are many obstacles that one would face if they were trying to rent a space in Kingston. There has been an uproar about the conditions of places that are being rented, the amount of money being asked for homes in these subpar locations and even the types of ads that are being printed which reveal very suspicious and nefarious plans by so called landlords.
Many places in the Kingston area are either brand new or located in high-profile areas and therefore overpriced or cheap and in terrible condition or situated in bad neighborhoods.
There are ‘unicorn’ locations that are reasonable, located in good areas and in reasonable conditions – nothing too new. Otherwise it will not be cheap. Those places, however, come occasionally and go quickly.
The uproar, however, is coming from the younger generation who are either freshly graduated and want a place for their own or just young people in general. These persons are just entering the working world and therefore do not get paid enough to be renting a small apartment for $50,000 to $120,000 per month.
It can be said that if the minimum amount being paid to the younger generation was within a working range then it would not be much of a problem to pay the monthly fee. However, that is not the case for many and the amount that most young people are getting paid based on their experience is not enough for them to afford a $75,000 apartment.
There is also the prevalent practice of renting places that are not fit for people to live in. This, as well as renting spaces that are not meant for sharing facilities to multiple persons at a time. These spaces are being rented with profits in mind, without proper setting up of the area for people to inhabit. You can live in your home in whatever condition you want or can afford but you should not be renting to people if the space is not up to living code. This practice is evil because these landlords are aware of the desperate need many people have to live somewhere of their own and they capitalize on this desperate need.
In the same breath, it is scary to think that there are people who will put out ads with the purpose of human trafficking, kidnapping, harassment, and other nefarious and dangerous intentions. There are ads asking for young females to rent spaces where they will be sharing facilities with the landlord. That is such a specific and seriously dangerous ad for young women who are just trying to be independent and live on their own. Women should not have to feel scared in renting space.
The renting market has taken on new meaning to young people who thought they would be able to live and pay their monthly fees without being scared, uncomfortable, targeted or overcharged.
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