Renters Are Choosing the Suburbs in Greater Numbers than Cities; Atlanta Metro in the Lead

Greater Atlanta leads the nation with a 26 percent increase in renter-occupied households in its suburban markets versus only 10 percent in its urban areas.

Table by RENTCafé
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The suburbs look more promising than ever for apartment developers in this post-recession era. An analysis of Census data by RENTCafé found that during a 5-year period (from 2011 to 2015) the number of renter households increased at a faster pace in suburban areas than in urban areas in 19 out of the 20 largest U.S. metropolitan areas.

Greater Atlanta leads the nation with a 26 percent increase in renter-occupied households in its suburban markets versus only 10 percent in its urban areas. Suburban Phoenix and suburban Riverside each added 23 percent more renters during the same period.

The largest net gains in terms of renter households from 2011 to 2015 were in suburban Riverside, CA (60,500 new renter households), suburban Chicago (57,500), suburban Miami (56,800), suburban Dallas (52,600) and suburban Atlanta (52,300).

The suburbs of St. Louis, Atlanta, Riverside and Boston also gained three times as many renters as their urban areas. The only metro where more renters prefer the city is Philadelphia, according to RENTCafé’s research.

The renting lifestyle has gained a lot of popularity in recent years among suburbanites, who have increasingly greater options in terms of types of rentals, from mid-level to high-end apartments, as well as more condo-quality amenities than the suburbs have ever seen before.