Economy Watch: Apartment Rents Stabilize in Summer

By D.C. Stribling, Contributing Editor

Source: ABODO National Apartment Report, September 2017

After falling through the first quarter, the U.S. national median rent has stabilized in recent months, climbing in September to its highest point of 2017: $1,018, though that’s up only a bit from January, when the median was $1,016. That’s according to the latest ABODO report on apartment rents, which the company released on Tuesday.

Cleveland experienced the greatest rent hike in August, with median one-bedroom rents jumping 12.8 percent, from $619 to $698. This is the second straight month of significant increases in Cleveland, after the market saw rents increase 5 percent in July. Rents in Santa Ana, Calif., also rose for the second straight month, from $1,673 to $1,816 (up 8.5 percent), as did Columbus, Ohio (up 4.1 percent); Honolulu (up 3.5 percent); and Baltimore (up 3.4 percent).

For the second month in a row, Glendale, Ariz., saw the largest monthly drop in rents, down 9.5 percent to $673. Other cities in the top five this month and last month for rent declines were St. Paul, Minn. (down 5.2 percent to $1,067); Tulsa, Okla. (down 4.6 percent); and Buffalo, N.Y. (down 3.8 percent). The only newcomer to the decline list was Houston, where the median one-bedroom price dropped 6.5 percent, from $1,184 to $1,107.

The nation’s highest-rent cites were the same in August as in July. San Francisco still leads the way, with a one-bedroom median rent of $3,240, up $30 from August’s report. New York City saw rents drop $57, but it still comes in at No. 2 on the list, with a median rent of $2,850. And San Jose, Calif., where rents increased to $2,483, retains its place at No. 3. Of the seven other top 10 cities with the highest rents, four saw increases over the month of August.

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