Rent poor households estimated at 27,000 to 31,000 in Seoul

Rent poor households estimated at 27,000 to 31,000 in Seoul

Ko Jae-man

2014.02.07 17:12:48

The rent poor refer to those who barely make their ends meet by spending most of their income on pricy housing rents. Generally, those whose housing rents represent over 30 percent of their total income fall into the category of the rent poor. 
The number of the rent poor households reached around 270,000 to 310,000 in Seoul alone. According to the Seoul Institute Friday, there are around 267,000 households in Seoul which spend over 30 percent of their incomes in paying housing rent (including loan interest payment, 3.18 percent of conversion rate of Korean-unique Jeonse leasing system jeonse to monthly rent), representing 7.6 percent of the total households in Seoul.
311,000 households have incomes below the minimum cost of living after paying rents, accounting for 8.8 percent of the total in Seoul.
In Seoul and its neighboring areas, the rent poor households numbered 463,000 based on housing rent portion and 690,000 based on residual income.
Based on housing rent portion, 62 percent of the rent poor are low income bracket, at 40th percentile or below, but 20 percent of high income earners, at 70th percentile and above, also belonged to the category. This means a large share of high income earners paying expensive jeonse and monthly rents was the rent poor.
Meanwhile, based on residual income, 96 percent of low income bracket fell into the rent poor category.

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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (, the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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