Rent at Kentucky Street Apartments set to increase this July

The Kentucky St. apartments are located just off of WKU’s campus and are available for year long leases. These apartments are available for full-time and part-time students.

Matt Stahl

Students living at the WKU Kentucky Street Apartments will see an increase in rent, starting next semester.

The apartments, which are already one of the most expensive options for students, will be increasing by $34 a month for a one bedroom, $47 a month for a married couple in a one bedroom and $41 a month for a two bedroom, starting in July, according to WKU’s website and an email that was sent to students currently living in the apartments by the WKU apartment staff.

“It’s really frustrating,” senior Rachel McClain who lives in the apartments said. “For people who have any sort of financial aid, through the school, or through FAFSA, this is a good resource, but I feel like they’re kind of taking advantage of it because they know that it’s easier to live there because of the funds being transferrable.”

McClain has lived in the apartments since January 2017, and her rent also went up last summer. She said she stays in the apartments despite the rent increase due to it being the easiest option.

“My loan transfers there better … than it would to any other apartment complexes,” McClain said. “Since I can’t really afford to work and pay rent and do school.”

WKU’s financial aid packages transfer to the university owned apartments easier than they do for other off-campus housing options.

Senior Rebecca Zimberg said while her overall experience with living in the apartments has been overwhelmingly positive, she was not happy about the rent increase. She said while her friends in other apartment complexes had their rents drop after a certain amount of time, the rent at the Kentucky Street Apartments continued to climb.

“I actually asked them why they’re increasing so much,” Zimberg said. “They told me that it’s to compete with other apartments.”

Zimberg said that she was later told that the changes were also due to economic reasons.

“They said other people are raising their price too,” Zimberg said. “I mean, now, what I’m paying here is $200 more than what I would be paying at the Registry or the Columns.”

Zimberg said while she likes living at the apartments due to the amenities, proximity to campus, safety and the fact that they offer one semester rentals, which is important to her since she will be graduating in December, she doesn’t want to pay a premium to leave the apartments early.

Zimberg also said while the financial aid aspect was not a concern for her, she could see where it might be a major problem for other students.

“I could understand where someone could feel trapped,” Zimberg said. “I know that it has driven some people away from the apartments. That price increase is utterly ridiculous.”

Heather Thomas, WKU’s apartments coordinator, declined to comment for this story. Mike Reagle, director of housing and dining, did not respond to phone calls, email or an office visit in time for publication.

News reporter Matt Stahl can be reached at 270-745-6011 and [email protected] Follow Matt on Twitter at @mattstahl97.