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Report: Red Lake County's rent increase among Minn.'s largest in 10-year period

RED LAKE COUNTY, Minn.—An apartment in Red Lake County costs more than it used to—about 30 percent more if you're talking the year 2000.

In a recent report released by the Minnesota Housing Partnership, the county landed among the organization's top 10 counties that saw the largest increase in median rent after adjusting for inflation.

The list was compiled by comparing data from 2000 to a five-year estimate created from data spanning 2009 to 2013, according to Leigh Rosenberg, research and communications director for MHP.

Red Lake tied for seventh on the list, which was topped by Big Stone County with a 68 percent increase.

Most of the counties on the list fall outside what is considered the state's metro area, which contains Minneapolis and St. Paul.

Rents in countries outside the metro area tend to be lower, so an increase could result in a more dramatic impact, Rosenberg said.

"If the rent increases by $30, and they start out at $500 versus $900, that percentage increase will be a little greater if the rent started out low," she added.

Overall, most Minnesota counties saw an increase during the time period analyzed by the Minnesota Housing Partnership.

In the state's northwest corner, the organization found four out of six counties in the area saw increases in median rent. The amount median rent increased ranged from 13 to 20 percent in Marshall, Pennington, Polk and Red Lake counties.

Rents in Kittson and Roseau counties dropped during the timeframe by 1 and 7 percent respectively—two of five counties in the state to buck the trend.

A gap between supply and demand is one likely cause for higher rent. Part of that gap could be attributed to little rental construction activity in a number of Minnesota counties, a conclusion based on the number of building permits filed from 2009 to 2014.

The housing market crash also likely played a role in an increase in demand for rental housing.

"There were a lot of people that were homeowners that became renters," Rosenberg said.

The report also notes many counties recorded a drop in median renter income during the 2000-13 time period—a 17 percent decrease statewide.

Following the Great Recession, it's possible many of the jobs lost during that time came back as low-paying positions, which often are occupied by renters, Rosenberg said.

On the Web:

View the 2015 county profiles created by the Minnesota Housing Partnership at goo.gl/extnn6.

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