San Francisco housing prices are sky high and even tech workers are having trouble paying $4,200 in monthly rent. One Wharton School graduate is bending the law to help ease the crisis.
Luke Iseman is living in a shipping container inside a warehouse and he’s renting out 11 other containers where his tenants share a communal toilet.
The enterprise is illegal and he’s been forced to move his operation twice, but Iseman hopes he’ll be able to spin a startup company out of the deal.
Iseman told Bloomberg Business his 160 square foot shipping container is the inventive solution the Bay Area needs to solve its housing crisis.
“It’s not making us much money yet, but it allows us to live in the Bay Area, which is a feat. We have an opportunity here to create a new model for urban development that’s more sustainable, more affordable and more enjoyable.”
The average home price has increased 103 percent since 2012 to $1.35 million and now only the top 10 percent of San Franciscans can afford to buy a house, according to the Business Insider.
For college graduates leaving school today, it will take 29 years to earn enough money for a down payment on a San Francisco house.
It doesn’t help the San Francisco housing crisis that Airbnb rentals have taken up almost 25 percent of the available housing units.
Confounding the problem is the forced Ellis Act evictions that allows landlords to legally kick out tenants in rent controlled apartments.
City residents who want to remain in San Francisco have been forced to get inventive.
One Mountain View man rented out a tent in his backyard for $46 a night or $965 a month, according to CBS San Francisco. It comes with shower privileges and the ability to eat inside.
City code enforcers shut him down, but it’s a sign of how bad the Bay Area housing crisis has become.
There’s even been a proposed moratorium on building luxury condos, but that was defeated by the Board of Supervisors even though it has strong resident support.
The problem is no one is building enough housing. In the past seven years, cities in the Bay Area have only built half the needed housing units, but workers continue to flood the area following the tech bubble.
For every one new housing unit, 10 tech jobs flood into the Bay Area.
[Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]