“Report: rent hikes greatly exceed income gains.”

Here’s an incendiary statement: “Over four years, market rents in [San Mateo County] have risen 50 percent while household incomes have been flat”, says local newspaper The Almanac, quoting County Department of Housing statistics. Average rent is up 12.4 percent over the past year, while average county household income over the same period is essentially flat.

How can rents rise sharply when income is stagnant?

Where are the first-time buyers?

The share of first-time buyers fell to its lowest point in nearly three decades, according to a survey released by the National Association of REALTORS. Of course, the “national” in National Association says that this is a national, not Silicon Valley, survey, and Silicon Valley often differs from the national market. But the story made me think back over who I’ve been working with recently.