I’ve personally witnessed two rental properties in my area, each managed by different companies and each “owned” by different absentee parasites, jack their monthly rent up by $50 each over the summer. And this is nothing; I’ve read anecdotes of $100+ monthly increases at time of lease renewal in other cities, especially common when a property is transferred to a new owner (assuming the tenants don’t simply get an eviction order).
Housing conglomerates seem to collude with each other, maintaining rent demands at roughly equivalent levels to ensure nobody gets too good of a deal in their area (the “market rate”). They keep watch on an area’s median wages and incomes, ensuring 25-50% of everything the tenants make through endless toil goes directly to their coffers and whatever meager crumbs get tossed to the working class from the political oligarchy over the years are quickly snatched up as well.
Among the lowest paid workers it’s also possible, due to decades of stagnant wages and uncontrolled rent increases in all directions as properties are steadily bought up and consolidated over time, that someone could be trapped in their current housing as prices of everything increase around them to the point that their income no longer passes the 3x or 4x income-to-rent ratio check, effectively making them immobile.
In my observed case, to absorb a $50 rent hike while also accounting for income taxes, the tenant would need an immediate roughly $.50/hour wage increase. Good fucking luck negotiating literally any kind of raise for any reason with your masters.