Kathie FitzPatrick
June 2022

How to Deal with Rising Rent

Rent prices are soaring for both houses and apartments. Single-family home rental prices are at an all-time high, having gone up an average of 7.8% in 2021. Of all the markets across the U.S., nearly 98% saw recorded price increases for one-bedrooms. All markets had increased for two bedrooms.

One-bedroom rents were up 24.4% nationwide, and two-bedroom rent prices were up 21.8%.

In January 2022, according to Redfin, the median home price went up 14% year-over-year, which is part of why rent prices are similarly going up. A lot of people are being priced out of buying a home, yet renting a home is proving to be just as challenging.

Along with high home prices affecting the rent prices, there were low vacancies, inflated costs of construction, and just enormous demand, all of which are putting a squeeze on renters.

So what can you do to navigate the marketplace?


If your landlord has warned you of an impending rent increase, the first thing you should do is negotiate.

If you’re a reliable tenant and pay on time, you may have more leverage here. A landlord doesn’t want to deal with the cost of replacing you, but at the same time, landlords are also dealing with higher costs. For example, taxes and utilities are going up.

Many landlords went months without being able to collect rent because of the eviction moratorium during the pandemic.

Maybe if you negotiate, your landlord still raises your rent, but not by as much. If you agree to do something like sign a longer lease, you could have more negotiation leverage.

Know Your Rights

In some cities, renters are experiencing increases when they renew that are as much as 40% higher. One way to help yourself is to research and learn more about your rights as a renter.

There’s a movement in many places around the country to regulate rent increases. For example, cities in Oregon and California put a cap on rent increases.

In other situations, while a landlord can raise your rent as much as they want, they’re required to provide you with notice. For example, a landlord has to let a tenant know at least 180 days before a planned change in Seattle.

While you’re researching, you can look up the median rental prices where you live. You can use that to show your landlord why your rent shouldn’t increase or at least not as much.

Change Your Living Situation

Unfortunately, you may have to change your living situation to deal with the exorbitant rent prices right now.

You could get a roommate, or you might change apartments. You could find that giving up a few features or amenities could help you find a cheaper new place.

Another way to save some money is to move out of the city center. The further you move from major urban areas, the cheaper rent will get.

Almost every city is also going to have areas of lower-priced properties. You have to be mindful of the safety of these neighborhoods, but lower-priced options will always be available. In some cases, this might be middle-class neighborhoods in the suburbs or outskirts of cities.

Consider Working with a Real Estate Agent

It can seem counterintuitive to pay a commission fee when you’re already worried about rising rent, but working with a real estate agent can benefit you.

First, an agent can help combat the issue of low vacancies because they will know of available options you might not have access to otherwise.

They can also help you stay within your budget by only showing properties that work for you.

A real estate agent might have creative ideas for places you can live that you’d otherwise not think about, and they can help you avoid being scammed.

A real estate agent can negotiate on your behalf, too, so you may get more desirable terms on your lease.

Kathie FitzPatrick, GRI CRS
Cell: 509-930-1966

Keller Williams Yakima Valley
Office: 509-966-1020
1017 S. 40th Avenue
Yakima, WA 98908

Equal Housing Opportunity