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Atlanta rents are still on the rise, but it could be worse

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Study looks at how many in country face rental cost "burden"

While the rising cost of rent may be brutal in many places all over the country, metro Atlanta renters are actually better off than most, relatively speaking, according to a new study.

A recently published list by ABODO looked at how many people are facing cost burdens by spending more than 30 percent of their income on rent.

Atlanta ranked 55 out of 100 other metro areas, with 49 percent of renters here spending more than 30 percent on rent. Does that mean renters of Atlanta are all making serious dough, or are spiking rents not as calamitous as many Atlantans believe?

But anyway — why the 30-percent measure?

The study cites the adage that renters should never spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing. The anecdotal recommendation is backed by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, who says households that spend more than 30 percent of their income on rent are "housing-cost burdened."

To make the determination, the ABODO study used data from the U.S. Census Bureau 2015 American Community Survey to select the 100 Metropolitan Statistical Areas with the most total renter units in the country.

Once selected, ABODO calculated the total percentage for each MSA of renter units who spent 30 percent or more of their 2015 income on rent.

Those renters falling into the categories "zero or negative income" and "no cash rent" were excluded from the calculation.

So that friend of yours who pulls $120K and acts like a $2,000/month unit in Buckhead is no burden at all — well, there's a statistical basis for why they're not totally crazy.