2014-05-13   Please HK government: do something about soaring rents!

Last month a kindergarten in Hong Kong was forced to close down because its property owner almost doubled the rent for its site. This month a small printing shop near my home in Jordan, a family business, is being forced to relocate because its landlord is increasing the rent from $14,000 to $40,000 per month!

Soon the only businesses able to afford ground floor shops will be the likes of McDonald's, 7-11, Circle K, chemists, jewellers, doctors, Park n Shop, Wellcome, Maxims, Cafe de Coral, massage centres etc. Small family businesses and restaurants will be driven out of business by high rents.

In Jordan I often notice small shops moving from one side of a street to another, because of unreasonable rent increases. A family of three I know has to move too, because their rent is going from $5,000 to $8,000. The madness of soaring rents  is affecting people all over Hong Kong, especially poorer people.  Many poor people are living on the streets because they cannot afford increased rents.

A friend of mine who rents out one flat said that his estate agent told him to put the rent up much higher. But the friend refused to do so because he knew the family renting his flat could not afford a higher rent. Such kind landlords are decreasing in number in Hong Kong. Hong Kong's biggest landlord, the Hong Kong government, needs to do something about this issue.