A Guy in LA
I moved here from Denver and have looked at tons of apartment rentals in Silver Lake and Los Feliz, pretty much they are all apartments in privately-owned small buildings. In like 99 percent of the cases, there is a BIG HOLE where the refrigerator is supposed to be. I am told it's BYOF (bring your own refrigerator). Seriously? I am supposed to buy a frickin' refrigerator? Is this some sucky LA thing?
Yours,We asked around Curbed HQ and all of us have refrigerators in our rentals, so we're stumped. LA thing?
It is indeed an LA thing; in fact, natives here are often refreshingly surprised to learn that elsewhere fridges generally come with a rental unit.
Why is it so?
There are too many renters here; the market for rentals is too big. Or, stated another way, there are not enough owners.
The LA housing market is tilted more heavily in favor of owners and less in favor of renters than in other cities. If we had a better ratio of owner-occupied units to rentals than we do---ours is lowest among the nation's top twenty cities---there would be fewer renters, and the smaller pool would be more sought after by owners.
Accept this as a guiding political postulate in the owner-tenant wars: wherever there are lower ratios of renters-to-owners, the renters have more leverage. Because when there are fewer renters, landlords have to compete to get good ones. They might even be inclined to spring for a fridge.
If the City of LA had a better renters-to-owners ratio, renters wouldn't have to drag around with them 50 cubic feet of steel whenever they change cribs.
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