Rent Hikes Push Myanmar’s Poor Into Homelessness

The myth of NYC rent control

Surging demand for property as Myanmar undergoes rapid change since shedding the isolation of junta rule has threatened to push more people from their homes, with rent hikes compounding low wages in and around the country’s most populous city. Figures from estate agents show rents have risen by 25 percent this year for a small Yangon apartment, while sales prices have doubled or even trebled over the past two years in some neighbourhoods. Tin Tin Win, 57, says she was forced to move to the compound with her daughter, son, two grandchildren and husband, after the family were asked to pay six months in advance — around $300 — to renew the lease on their property. “Our rent went up several times…
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit

But critics (and there are many) argue that rent control is far too restrictive and creates an artificial economy in the city and prevents millions of dollars of development. They also argue that it makes finding an apartment much harder for those who are living in unregulated accommodation because few people wish to leave a rent stabilized property, even view publisher site if it is inappropriate for their family situation, so the property market stagnates. Adam Davison, of NPRs Planet Money (an excellent podcast which I highly recommend, even for those who have little grounding in economics), believes that rent control will die out in New York over the next few years robbing Manhattan of the very diversity so many of us celebrate. But just as Manhattan looks set to drop its rent controls, Britain is looking to them as a potential answer to housing issues in London.
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s