Facebook page outs landlords

Editor’s note: This introductory piece is the first part in a three-part series examining the increase in rent rates in the Ohio Valley that is a direct result of the oil and gas industry boom.

IT?IS no secret that the Ohio Valley has seen a boom in business with the flood of the oil and gas industry.

New businesses, hotels and restaurants have been added every day.

With the economical positives that this industry has brought to the area, there have been several negatives to follow.

One of the biggest negatives has been the increase in rent in Belmont and Harrison County.

Cody Coleman-Chrisman became involved when she found the Facebook page Stop Greedy Landlords in the Ohio Valley.

On this page, she found several postings found on Craigslist and in the newspaper, along with several people whose rent has gone up due to the incoming oil and gas.

“I found (the prices of the rent) ridiculous, it was quite provocative.

The woman who started it was from Carroll County, I do not know her but she ended up giving me the Facebook page,” Chrisman said.

Chrisman is orginially from Harrison County and was living in New York at the time.

The goal of the Facebook page was to bring attention to the problem.

When Chrisman took over the page, there were about thirty followers, now in the last several months there are over 600 followers and it continues to grow.

Chrisman is working to bring awareness to this problem and has worked tirelessly trying to get others involved as well.

“Rent has went up 400 percent in one year to $2,500 and above,” said Chrisman who added that the housing market has not went up, while the rental market has. . “I think there is a national rent increase, especially with housing market they decided to rent instead of buy but now I have found a lot of people who are moving home, the people who are really hurt by this (rent increase) are the locals.”

There are several people who due to this rent increase has had to move back in with parents or other family members because they could no longer afford to rent.

According to Chrisman, Harrison County already had a proverty rate that was higher then 20 percent.

Van Dyne can be reached at kvandyne@timesleaderonline.com