Villa Miseria Buenos Aires

Units near the entrances of shantytowns like Villa 31 are the safest and command the highest rents.

The number of inhabitants living in Buenos Aires villas or shantytowns rose by 52.3% over the past decade according to a front page story in today’s La Nacion.

Commensurate with that growth has been the increase in rental rates in these villas where the laws of supply and demand have given birth to an informal real estate brokerage network.

Rents in Villa 31 More Expensive Than Some Neighborhoods is the headline of Perfil.com’s analysis of rental rates in one of the largest villas in Capital Federal where precarious, hodge podge construction is now reaching four and five stories. 60% of all shantytown residents live in southern Buenos Aires, according to 2010 census data.

A one-room rental in Villa 31 with a shared bathroom and no kitchen runs between $1,000 and $2,000 pesos a month which is more than one-room apartments (monoambientes) with all city services in barrios like Congreso, Constitucion, Flores, Lugano and Villa Luro.

Statistics from the Annual Housing Study show 30% of villa inhabitants are renters, while the number of slumlords controlling dozens of units is growing. Perfil’s Ignacio Pineiro says its possible to find some “owners” with as many as fifty rooms for rent at any given time. (Full Story in Spanish)

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