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Study: Inland Empire leads the state in tenant evictions

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The real estate firm Redfin is shining a spotlight on eviction rates across the country this week.

Researchers there say there is no national database tracking renter evictions. For the report, Redfin analyzed public records, including data from California.

How California stacks up

"Much to my surprise, we actually do better than the country," says Richard Green, director of USC's Lusk Center for Real Estate. 

Green says the Redfin numbers surprised him, given the high cost of rent in the state. 

"Nationally, the eviction rate is in the neighborhood of five percent, and we don't have any [metropolitian areas] where eviction rates are quite that high."

Eye on the Inland Empire

Tenancy in California may be a prettier picture than in, say, California's neighbor Nevada, but that doesn't mean that everything is coming up California poppies. In the Inland Empire, which includes San Bernardino and Riverside counties, the eviction rate is over three percent, according to the Redfin report.

Rents are lower in the Inland Empire, but USC's Richard Green says, so are incomes. 

"If you look at per capita income in San Bernardino County, it's about thirty percent lower than it is in Los Angeles County," Green says. "Riverside County is about 25 percent lower."

As a result, tenants who may be barely getting by may find themselves in a precarious position.

"If people have just one financial event happen in their life — something as simple as [blowing out] a tire on their car — they're much more vulnerable than people closer to the Pacific Ocean," Green says. 

Inland Empire renters living paycheck to paycheck could quickly find themselves unable to make ends meet.

To listen to the full interview, click on the blue media player above.