I read the articles regarding rental housing problems in Worthington with great interest. I have been in the rental business for nearly 35 years, and I feel I can answer some of the mayor's questions. Yes: As he pointed out, it is extremely difficult to get private development to construct multi-family rental housing. I might add our four-plex apartment house built in 1979 at 504 Lake St. was the last apartment built with private funds.
There are certainly good reasons for this. First and foremost would be the high cost of construction. Secondly, the amount of local, state and federal monies used to subsidize apartment housing limits what a private investor can do. I have no problem with the latter, but cost of construction is something we can't control. One 1,100-square-foot apartment would cost $165,000 to construct. At 6 percent interest over 20 years, the private investor would have to receive $1,200 a month in rent. When you add in taxes, insurance and other hidden costs, the rent per unit would run over $1,500 a month.
It is true that the income of the majority of our community does not warrant that kind of rent.
In closing, the Daily Globe articles were excellent. Somehow, we need to find ways to increase our median income here in Worthington.