Staggering Number Of Homeless In LA Shows How Tough It Is To Get By

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Mac Slavo via,


The number of homeless people in Los Angeles is skyrocketing. In just one year, the figures revealed that the homeless population in the city grew 20% while the numbers for the wider Los Angeles County were even higher at 23%.

As if looking at those numbers isn’t cringeworthy enough, The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority reported Wednesday that 6,000 homeless young people were tallied across the county in January, a 61% increase over the 2016 total. Most of the young people are ages 18 to 24. All the youth shelters have waiting lists and affordable housing is tough to find, even with a rent voucher, according to Heidi Calmus of Covenant House California, an international youth homeless services agency with a branch in Hollywood. “The system is overwhelmed,” Calmus said Tuesday night as she and a colleague, Nick Semensky, delivered toiletry bags and sandwiches to young people living in the streets.

Despite efforts to combat the problem, the number of homeless continue to go up. In 2015 authorities declared a public emergency as the numbers sleeping on the streets soared. City officials committed $100 million to tackle the problem. It’s safe to say that whatever is being done right now is not working.

Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn described the figures as “staggering.” “Homelessness in LA County has grown at a shocking rate,” she said in a statement. “Even as work is being done to get thousands of people off the street and into housing, more and more people are becoming homeless. It is clear that if we are going to end the homeless crisis, we need to stem the overwhelming tide of people falling into homelessness.”

But it isn’t that easy. Experts are placing the blame on soaring rents and a high cost of living as the two major factors. According to, a 900 square foot furnished apartment will cost over $2400 per month.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said there was “no sugarcoating the bad news”. “It’s impossible to wrap your head around the numbers,” he told reporters, adding that soaring rents and the city’s high cost of living were partly to blame. “We can’t let rents double every year,” he told reporters. Average rents in Los Angeles County have increased by 32% since 2000 while average household incomes for people renting have fallen by 3% when adjusted for inflation, according to the California Housing Partnership.

Mayor Garcetti is correct in that you cannot sugarcoat these numbers. In its latest report, the LAHSA said there were 57,794 people homeless in the county during its survey in January, compared to 46,874 in 2016. In the city there were 34,189 with no permanent roof over their heads, the report said, compared to 28,464 the year before.

The solution, according to the politicians in Los Angeles, is of course, to throw money at the problem. The county needs to build more than 550,000 affordable rental homes for low-income households, the LAHSA says. Los Angeles recently approved new measures to raise $1.2 billion in bonds to build 10,000 new units of housing for homeless people. There are also plans to raise about $3.5billion over 10 years to pay for other homelessness projects.

When the number of homeless increases this dramatically, it’s easy to see that the nation is in a bit of an economic bind.  It’s getting harder and harder to get by, and any sort of financial issue, no matter how small, could easily cause homelessness for those living paycheck to paycheck.

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PT's picture

They should get jobs building homes for each other.

Cheka_Mate's picture

Amish style barn raising in the middle of Compton or Watts?

That would be the day...

Offthebeach's picture

3rd generation builder here.

House structures of the 1920's-1970's ( guesstimate 80% ) are now illegal. Verboten!

All new housing are dictated to have insane standards.  Thus costly.  It is not legal to build a safe, sanitary,  low(er) cost house. 

Many people would love such a house, could afford privately such a house, and probibly grew up in such a house, but the government overlords forbid it.


PT's picture

I've been wondering about that.  I've noticed a decreased quality in houses in my country over the last couple of decades but only in one aspect (I don't know everything about building).  I've been wondering how far the cancer has spread.

When you can drill a hole in a brick with a cheap drill - not even a hammer drill - and a normal drill bit - not a masonary bit - that sorta makes me wonder too.

Offthebeach's picture

People want the look of wealthy people houses, with out the cost which is a function of materials and old craftsman.  Only the very wealthy can afford that.  But also I think nobody builds such that you would say ..." this is our family house, for generations..."   because who can trust this politicalized economy to be safe for generations?  So we live in glorified, disposible tents.

DivisionBell's picture


You can't afford to live there.  Walk, hitch, sell some blood and buy a bus ticket if you have to, but go somewhere else.  There's plenty of land, low-cost housing, and jobs, just not all in the same place.  You didn't make the cut for the big city but it's a hellhole anyway.



PT's picture

... and where-ever you go, grow, or at least plant, some food.  You may never be able to own land.  That is no reason to starve.  Forced to accept that the system can not support you?  Find empty land, grow food.  You don't owe it to anyone to starve if the land is not theirs.  And Fuck the Banksters.  They stole the land through counterfeiting and fraud.  The banksters' land is land they stole from you.


Those other places have cheap rent, food, and land, but the heroin is really expensive.

Never One Roach's picture

Grads from Evergreen College?

Koba the Dread's picture

Damned good advice, DivisionBell. Instead of all the ZH creepy-crawlers who diss those who are in the streets, you actually offer a solution to their problem. Then again, better to be on the skids in LA than living the high life in Dumas, Texas. That's show biz, huh? Better to gamble on being discoved by the studios tomorrow than to be a ding-dong daddy.

PT's picture

Any minute now that free-market doo-hickey is gonna kick in and some innovative entrepreneur is going to build homes that the homeless can afford to buy.





(Probably made out of cardboard and with a chic word written on it in a trendy font - something like "Ikea", "MayTag" or "Westinghouse" ...)

any_mouse's picture

Wasn't some billionaire TED talker building large crate homes in the LA area for the homeless where they won't be in the public eye?

Did the guy's attention span time out?

fattail's picture

Zuckerberg volunteered to give them all a universal basic income annuity.

Koba the Dread's picture

Wrong! Zuckerberg offered to let them all join Facebook.

CJgipper's picture

Zoning banned them.   -not a joke

hmmmstrange's picture

If only there was a way to get rid of 25% of the people in LA county........

hmmmstrange's picture

Illegals shouldn't be killed, just sent home.

Maybe hire these guys to build the wall.

TheReplacement's picture

With so many politicians thinking the Chinese have it all figured out, I would not be surprised for them to decide to build the wall the Chinese way - fill it with the bodies of the workers (in this case the homeless).

ZeroLounger's picture

Forcing the youth to go to asia won't solve the problem. /s

Oh....why do the 18-24 yo's outrank everyone else? They need food, no one else does?

Xena fobe's picture

Cancel the Eb5 and H1b program.

scoutshonor's picture

Nope, those are just a bunch of people that made it into L.A. then abandoned all hope after saying: "fuk-it I am not driving through that shit again."

hooligan2009's picture

sanctuary city.

just like europe is to north africa ans the middle east.

print up a million or so 3d homes

Faeriedust's picture

The 3D homes are a possible solution.  Except, of course, they wouldn't pass local inspections or ordinances.  Obviously LA would prefer to have 60,000 homeless camping in the streets, than allow cheap, modest housing to be built.

PT's picture

They serve as a warning to the slaves - "Spin that wheel faster, young hamster or THAT could be YOU!!!"

Xena fobe's picture

There's no land on which to put them.

buttmint's picture

Barry Sotero's open borders.....WINNING


Von Berger's picture

How many homeless are legally registered citizens?

Obozo must be soooooooo proud ' what happens when a community organiser is manipulated into a presidency.

PT's picture

Homes cause GlowBull Warming.  Anyone who haz a home is a terrrrst.

Koba the Dread's picture

What the hell is a "legally registered citizen"?  My family's been here since the 1600s and none of us has ever "registered" to be a citizen.

Zepper's picture

1st world country baby!!!! How fucked is that?! 


You wont see this shit on MSM. NO FUCKING WAY! This is the fucking truth... the rubber hitting the ground. 

Faeriedust's picture

Yeah.  Like Singapore or Mumbai.  Plenty of wealth for the already-wealthy, plenty of shit for the already-filthy.

The solutions are well-known and worked in the 50s and 60s.  Tax the 1% at 90%.  Tax capital gains at MORE, not less, than EARNED income.  Spend tax receipts on infrastructure, public schooling, public health, libraries, free internet and telecommunications services.  Impose rent controls in zones where the "free market" has failed to provide affordable housing for people working at median wages.

Round up the top 200 individual political contributors and put them in front of a firing squad. Ultimate responsibility-check for the Ruling Class. The country will get a LOT better within five years.

RockySpears's picture

That's it, throw other peoples money at it!



Xena fobe's picture

Not just any other people.  The 1% created this problem.  Sadly, the working poor are always made to pay and nothing gets fixed because of corruption

shovelhead's picture


Well known that rent control discourages multidwelling building anywhere it is implemented. Why would anyone invest in building apt's if there's no profit to be made? The money simply moves elsewhere.

Free markets don't "fail", they simply mirror the reality of existing conditions. You ain't gonna build low cost housing on a 15 million dollar lot in LA.

Xena fobe's picture

Few cities in LA county have rent control.  Gentrification and immigration are the problem.


PT's picture

Land.  They ain't making any more of it.
Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location Location...

Elasticity.  Barrier to Entry.  Restricted Supply.

Question the underlying assumptions.

Extortion exists but you simply ASSUME it doesn't.

Xena fobe's picture

Faeriedust for President!

Koba the Dread's picture

Singapore? Poor people? It's obvious you've never made it out of Oshkosh.

fattail's picture

Homelessness was the global warming of the eighties.  Dan Rather, Peter Jennings, and Tom Brokaw talked about it endlessly.  Of course it was all Reagan's fault.  When Clinton was elected, never heard a peep about it afterwards.

Hitlery_4_Dictator's picture

what if you have no 401(k) because you knew it was a scam along time ago?

Horse Pizzle's picture

Played basketball or soccer instead of doing homework.  Never learned English.   We should offer them free heroin.

Tachyonic's picture

Why don't all the self-righteous in Hollywood, who make $$$ playing dress up and pretending to be something, pitch-in and buy land/build homes for these poor souls?!?!

PT's picture

I'm quite sure their mansions have a few empty rooms to spare.  And some of the mansions are probably empty for a significant number of months per year.

"There was living space for 13 families in this house ..."




On second thought, naaaaaaaa, we all know how this shit turns out in the real world.

A home of your own.  If you can defend it.

shovelhead's picture


They'd rather do a "Public Service" commercial to convince YOU to pay for it.

forgottenozonehole's picture

blame the russians.....

Vendetta's picture

Yep, I had heard the russians hacked the ADT systems in their homes and made them lose their homes