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Florida Teacher Gets A Call A Few Days Before School Started Saying She & Her Son Had 2 Weeks To Move Out Of Their Home

Photo: Billion Images, Michael Burrell, Kubrak78, Vanessa Garcia, typhoonski / Canva; @momteacherfriend / TikTok
Florida mother and teacher upset over eviction

Finding a home can be a daunting experience. For some people, the challenge comes with finding their "dream home" — making sure it has everything they desire. For others, it's just about finding an affordable place.

A Florida-based teacher recently shed light on the housing crisis she and her son are facing. Known as Jen, the high school English instructor has been renting a single-wide mobile home in South Florida since 2016 for $1,000 a month. However, she was caught off guard when informed that she had only two weeks to vacate their residence.

The teacher was told she and her son had two weeks to move out of their home — days before school started.

"On August 7th, the night before open house, I got a phone call about 5 o'clock in the afternoon from my property manager saying that our place had been sold," Jen said. This notification came at an inconvenient time as it was right before the start of a new school year and her son's senior year of high school.

Jen has paid her rent every month since moving to South Florida for teaching. Despite this dedication and having paid $72,000 over six years without delay or defaulting once, Jen now finds herself scrambling for alternative accommodation options.



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"Renting is not the issue," explained Jen, but highlighted how "all the money that you put towards a rental is just kind of going down the drain." The dilemma is exacerbated due to scarce rental availability in South Florida.

A quick search on Zillow showed that for where she resides presently, finding a three-bedroom home would cost at least $1,500 per month, even with stringent conditions attached, such as minimum credit score requirements and income being three times the rent amount.

These stipulations in place, coupled with her salary, make securing a rental home all the more challenging. "I am a high school English teacher in South Florida. I don't make $70k per year," she said. 

Despite living in a small town, she detailed how homes are still too pricey. "Even in smaller towns of 15k people, our homes are $200k and up for the nice ones. House payments run $1,500 or more on average," she said

Jen acknowledged that "it's really sad that the housing market is the way it is right now." She believes "people deserve to be able to buy a home and not sit there and have to rent a place."

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Her predicament has sparked a broader conversation about affordable housing, especially for professional sectors like teaching. 

Being in neither low-income nor high-income brackets puts individuals like Jen in a tight spot where they earn too much to qualify for housing assistance but not enough to afford current market prices. 

"So how do we address the teacher shortage and the housing shortage when you need qualified teachers?" she asked her audience.



The comments on her video revealed that this isn't just an issue confined to Florida but is prevalent across America. She affirmed the point in a follow-up video responding to this comment. "This is not just a Florida issue. This is a nationwide issue," she said. "Everybody deserves a place to live".

According to Freddie Mac, the United States is short roughly 3.8 million units of housing, which includes homes for rent and for sale.

The corporation, which is an alternative name for the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, or FHLMC, cites "a lack of available labor to build homes, as well as regulations over land use and zoning" as causes for the shortage, as well as "pushback that new construction gets in the nation's suburbs and cities and "homebuilding activity cratered after the Great Recession... never totally recovered."

Additionally, Jen's plea throws light on an escalating problem faced by many middle-class professionals who are being effectively priced out of both rental and homeownership markets.

According to an August 2023 article from The New York Times, the mortgage rate is at 7%, making it the highest level since 2002. So, now more than ever, salaries like being a teacher need to be raised.

Everyone deserves a comfortable place to live, especially people like Jen, a mother and a teacher, educating the next generation of people.

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Ethan Cotler is a writer and frequent contributor to YourTango living in Boston. His writing covers entertainment, news, and human interest stories.