SAN DIEGO — Rents in San Diego County are the highest they've ever been.
One group struggling to pay the higher costs are college students returning for the fall semester.
"I mean, I've had to pick up extra hours to cover the cost," said San Diego State student, Shawn Bianchi.
"It is very very difficult. They say you don't want rent to be more than 30% of your income, but there's no way to not have like two jobs or three jobs. I have a friend who has three jobs and they're paying more than that out of pocket for rent," said San Diego State student, Autumn King.
King subleases a room off campus to cut costs. She also works part-time, and is thoughtful about how she spends her money.
"I go to the on-campus good bank. I drive 20 minutes to Chula Vista to get my produce because that's where I can afford it," said King.
According to rental search engine Rent., nationally, prices are up 26% for a one bedroom apartment at just over $1,700, and nearly 27% for a two bedroom at just over $2,000 a month compared to this time last year.
In San Diego, it's even higher.
"In San Diego, it's a little bit steeper. In San Diego, a one bedroom is up 34%. A two bedroom is up 30%," said Brian Carberry, Rent.'s senior managing editor.
Carberry says one solution, which a lot of college students already do, is to find roommates.
“A lot of college kids are going to be taking on roommates. They're going to be living with multiple people in some of these apartments, so they're not alone and going to be responsible for everything,” said Carberry.
Carberry also suggests sacrificing location and or amenities.
"They might not want to get something brand new, top of the line luxurious, in which case they will save a little bit of money," said Carberry.
With so much rental competition, Carberry says find a co-signer to make your application standout.
Finally, consider looking at on-campus housing, which is sometimes cheaper, though those costs are slightly up as well.
At San Diego State, a spokesperson tells CBS 8 first and second year students from outside the area are required to live on-campus, and their housing website offers resources for those struggling to find a place to live.
“It's a tough situation for a lot of college kids. They just need to be smart, do their homework figuratively and see what's the most logical decision for their housing,” said Carberry.
WATCH RELATED: Rental competition: study shows average of 24 applicants for every rental in San Diego (July 2022)