Rents in the capital Tehran have increased by more than 50 percent in one year amid a similar rate of inflation, surveys by the Central Bank of Iran indicate.

According to a report published on Wednesday, Tehran’s rent index in December was 50.7 percent higher in comparison with the corresponding figure for the previous year.

The average price of one square meter (11 sq feet) of a residential unit was estimated at about 330 million rials or about $1,200 in today’s exchange rate, which makes it practically impossible for an ordinary resident of the capital to earn enough money to buy any property with an average salary of less than $200 a month.

In fact, prices have remained constant since 2018 if calculated in US dollars, but Iranians earn rials, which has nosedived against other currencies. Real estate has remained a safe heaven to protect capital from devaluation.

Theannual inflation rate stood at 42.4 percent during December 21-Jaunuary 20. The annual rate is calculated based on a basket of prices for the year ending in each month compared to the previous 12 months.

Iran’s currency has fallen eightfold since early 2018, due to US sanctions while inflation has skyrocketed. Millions of working Iranian are now categorized as poor, with the middle class shrinking.

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