MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — New Directions of Horry County, a Myrtle Beach homeless shelter, has seen more people spend the night at its facilities as inflation and rising rents diminish people’s spending power.
New Directions has three shelters in Myrtle Beach with roughly 200 beds available each night, according to William Howsare, program director at the shelter, who said he’s seeing more clients forced to return to the shelter for another stint because they’re being priced out.
“It’s terrible,” Howsare said. “Finding someone housing to go to today is absolutely a nightmare in this area.”
Howsare said the summertime normally means an influx in clients, adding that inflation is only adding to the increased demand.
“It’s extremely demoralizing after working so hard to get on your feet putting in time and effort,” Howsare said.
Howsare said it takes about $6,000 for someone to work their way out of the shelter.
“It’s a huge detriment to them from them having to save X amount of dollars two years ago, to now having to save double the amount they would have to save to get their own place,” Howsare said.
Howsare said fewer landlords are accepting vouchers from clients ready to leave the shelter, and he thinks it’s because landlords can make more money elsewhere.
“Turning your property into a long-term rental or a short-term rental and taking it out of the housing market for subsidies, you can potentially make a lot more money,” Howsare said.