Nashville renters adding roommates as rents soar in the city

Hedda Bates
Posted at 5:08 PM, Apr 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-07 20:07:44-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Hedda Bates has been living alone since college, but that will soon change due to rising rent.

"It’s a little bit deflating," Bates said. "To going back to having to share your space and everything, but it’s not the worst thing in the world."

Her current lease at Grande View Apartment Homes in Bellevue is roughly $1,250 a month. She was shocked to find out that if she renews her lease, she’ll be paying nearly $1,600 a month.

She said some of her neighbors are leaving, and the parking lot is now filled with out-of-state plates.

She recently got a raise, but it's still not enough.

"I try to save. I try to invest. I have an IRA. Those things are important to me, and taking a 25% increase on my rent, a lot of that would go away," Bates said.

She said some of her friends spend 50% of their salary on rent and live paycheck to paycheck.

"People are just going to be left in a situation of commuting an hour, two hours,"Bates said. "I know many people do that, and it’s tough, especially with gas prices the way they are right now."

According to Apartment Insiders CEO Joel Sanders, the average rent in west Nashville is $1,556 and it was $1,301 a year ago, which is a 19.6% increase.

"Something definitely needs to be done, I’m not a lawmaker, but I think something tied to income would be useful," Bates said.

Hedda posted on Nextdoor asking if anyone needs a roommate and around 50 people messaged her.

"I definitely had a lot of people reach out to me with some great offers so I’ll be fine," Bates said.

She said she asked her apartment community for some rent relief. However, most places aren't doing pandemic assistance anymore.