Rents, Evictions Spike At Two Hannity-Owned Georgia Apartments
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One apartment investor is riding the wave of rising apartment rents across the Metro Atlanta region. It just so happens that same investor also hosts popular conservative daily radio and cable news programs.
One of Sean Hannity's Metro Atlanta apartment holdings is pushing rents up by 50% on some of its residents, the New York Daily News reports. Hannity, through a series of limited liability companies each using SPMK followed by various Roman numerals, has been an active investor of housing in the wake of the real estate housing crash and Great Recession in 2008.
In 2013, his outfit purchased the 112-unit Meadows apartments in Lithia Springs for $3.15M. Since his purchase, Hannity has raised rents from $650 to as much as $1K/month, the Daily News reports.
While a steep increase, the rent is lower than average for Metro Atlanta, which saw rents increase more than 5% this past year to an average of more than $1,100/month, according to a recent Marcus & Millichap report. Rents in some of the hottest submarkets of Metro Atlanta, like Midtown and Buckhead, have led to calls on public officials to address a mounting affordability crisis in the region.
"He's not helping. He's making money," Iyabo Balogun, a 51-year-old home helper who is a resident of the Meadows, told the New York Daily News. "If he was helping, he wouldn't be increasing rents every year."
Hannity has defended his involvement in real estate investments since news of his ownership surfaced last month as a result of ties to President Donald Trump's embattled personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.
"It is ironic that I am being attacked for investing my personal money in communities that badly need such investment and in which, I am sure, those attacking me have not invested their money," Hannity said in a statement. "The fact is, these are investments that I do not individually select, control, or know the details about; except that obviously I believe in putting my money to work in communities that otherwise struggle to receive such support."
Eviction notices at a separate Georgia apartment complex owned by Hannity have risen sharply, The Guardian reports. Hannity's LLC sought 61 evictions at the 152-unit Hampton Place apartments in Perry, Georgia, over the past four years. The previous owner sought evictions of 12 tenants over a different four-year period of ownership, according to the Guardian.