SCOTTSDALE — “65-year-old mom and 20-something year-old daughter,” Jordan Barclay laughs. “It should be a sitcom.”
For months, this has been Barclay’s reality.
“My mom and I share a queen size bed with my large cat. I mean it’s pretty sad,” says Barclay.
The two are living in a single room inside an Extended Stay Hotel in Scottsdale, Arizona.
“[It] feels like an apartment complex but also like a hostel,” she says. “We’ve been here since September and it’s hard to find a new place."
Barclay says they can’t afford apartments that require first and last month of rent deposits. At their Extended Stay, their current rent is $710.43 a week. For a month, it’s $2,841.72.
One year ago, Barclay was paying $2,350 for a two bed, two bath Valley rental home. They lived there for five years.
“In June, we got a notice that we had to be out by August 31, and we couldn’t find anything in the time span, and we ended up here,” says Barclay.
"I think she may also be a fortunate one that she can afford to stay in an Extended Stay Hotel,” says Mark Stapp, Fred E. Taylor Professor of Real Estate W.P. Carey School of Business Arizona State University.
Stapp says Barclay’s situation is increasing in the Valley, classified as a ‘Working Poor’ group.
"These are people who actually have a job, but the cost of living for them exceeds what they're able to afford,” Stapp says.
He calls this current housing climate an ‘Affordability Crisis.’
“They're spending more than 50%, or 50%, of their income on housing. It really just takes one little thing for them to then fall down to the very bottom and in not able to afford a place to live,” Stapp says.
Stapp says there’s no simple solution.
"It's going to be hard to get us out of this condition because it takes so long to add more inventory to the marketplace.”
For now, the mother-daughter duo is forced to be patient.
“We’re just waiting for the market to go down,” says Barclay.
Stapp says from an economic standpoint, this is a larger concern for our community.
He says it’s harder to attract employees when it’s not sustainable to live in the Valley.
“I know people are in way worse situations,” says Barclay. “So this isn’t the worst and we have a roof over our heads and we’re safe.”