Don’t look now, but more homeless people are coming to a nice hotel near you.
The Post reported on Thursday that the city now pays to put up a mind-boggling 11,000 homeless people in hotels — nearly one in six of the roughly 61,000 previously in shelters — costing taxpayers an average $222 a night compared with $150 a night in shelters.
The Big Apple’s hotels are making less money than they were a few years ago, and owners are scrambling for bucks as they see the value of their properties tumble. The recent creation of tens of thousands of new rooms, as well as competition from Airbnb, has driven down room rates and the city’s hotel market is “performing like mushy apple sauce,” says industry journal Hotel Management.
Mayor de Blasio, ever eager to throw Band-Aids at serious crises, offered to fill empty rooms with homeless people, taking large bunches of rooms, or even entire hotels, off owners’ hands, sometimes for more than they’d make from regular guests. And hoteliers are more than willing to play along. Their business, after all, depends on it.