Realtor.com® April Rental Report: National Rents Drop Again, But Three Midwest Markets Surge to Record Highs

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 28 May 2024 06:07

Median rents fell -0.7% in April with renters in pricey Austin, Las Vegas, and San Francisco enjoying the biggest savings, meanwhile rents in Indianapolis, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis reach a high

Rents fell again last month, with particularly big savings for renters in Austin, Texas; Las Vegas; and San Francisco compared to when those markets peaked, according to the Realtor.com® Rental Report released today. Still, some areas with low unemployment and a slower pace of new home construction saw record-high rents that could continue to rise into the summer months.

The median asking rent nationally for 0-2 bedroom units fell by -0.7% from April of last year, to $1,723, and declined across all size categories. It was the ninth straight year-over-year drop, though the pace of rent declines has slowed. Rents are just $33 (-1.9%) below their August 2022 peak.

“In the ever-fluctuating real estate market, renters will find that trends vary significantly by location,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com®. “Renters in some historically expensive areas are seeing lower prices compared to what they would have paid at the peak of the market, while many relatively affordable markets are witnessing a continued rise in rental costs to new highs, and the scales could tip to even more markets later this summer.”

Renters in some South and West markets see biggest savings; Austin leads the way

The median asking rent for Austin, Texas in April was $1,494, which is down $195 (-11.5%) from its September 2022 peak. That’s the largest percent savings, compared to the market’s peak, among the 50 biggest metro markets. The decline was partly driven by an influx of new multi-family homes into the Southern market, which has helped to push Austin’s rental vacancy rate higher. Rents in Austin have been declining month-over-month since June 2023. Still, April’s median asking rent in Austin is $260 (21.1%) more than it was five years ago, before the pandemic. The metro with the second-biggest rent savings since the peak was Las Vegas, where renters could save $184 on average by renting a typical property today, down -11.1% from the June 2022 high. And in San Francisco, a typical renter could save $303 per month, down -9.9% from the July 2022 peak. 

Three Midwest metros hit record-high rents and more could follow

By contrast, in parts of the Midwest, rents are climbing. The median asking rents hit their highest levels since March 2019 in three Midwest cities: Indianapolis (up 4.5% annually to $1,334), Milwaukee (up 3.8% to $1,671), and Minneapolis (up 2.5% to $1,529). Driving higher rents are below-average unemployment rates and the slow pace of new multi-home construction. Current rental prices in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Chicago are all slightly below peak but could hit their own record highs this summer if the recent growth trend continues. While rents in many Midwest metro areas are generally more affordable than in cities in other parts of the country, in some key markets renters are facing increasing affordability challenges.

Rents decline across all size categories

On average, rents for units of all sizes continued their months-long trend downward in April. Studios saw the biggest drop, with the median asking rent nationwide falling by 1.7% on a year-over-year basis, to $1,443. That’s down -3.2% from its October 2022 peak but 18.9% higher than five years ago. Median rent for one-bedroom units fell -1.4% to $1,601, the eleventh straight month of annual declines. And the median rent for two-bedroom units fell by -0.7% to $1,916. That’s -1.9% lower than its August 2022 peak but 24.4% more than five years ago.

National Rental Data – April 2024

Unit Size

Median Rent

Rent YoY

Rent Change – 5 years

Overall

$1,723

-0.7%

22.5%

Studio

$1,443

-1.7%

18.9%

1-bed

$1,601

-1.4%

20.9%

2-bed

$1,916

-0.7%

24.4%

Rental Data – 50 Largest Metropolitan Areas – April 2024

Metro

Median Rent (0-2 Bedrooms)

YoY (0-2 Bedrooms)

Peak Rent since Mar. 2019

Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Alpharetta, GA

$1,611

-5.6%

$1,767

Austin-Round Rock, TX

$1,494

-8.3%

$1,689

Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD

$1,762

-5.6%

$1,872

Birmingham-Hoover, AL

$1,299

1.5%

$1,333

Boston-Cambridge-Newton, MA-NH

$2,926

-1.7%

$3,056

Buffalo-Cheektowaga, NY

NA

NA

NA

Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, NC-SC

$1,513

-5.6%

$1,670

Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI

$1,834

1.4%

$1,860

Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN

$1,354

1.0%

$1,362

Cleveland-Elyria, OH

$1,210

2.1%

$1,226

Columbus, OH

$1,182

-1.1%

$1,222

Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX

$1,491

-2.8%

$1,599

Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO

$1,910

-0.8%

$1,987

Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI

$1,290

0.6%

$1,352

Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT

NA

NA

NA

Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX

$1,385

-2.7%

$1,434

Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN

$1,334

4.5%

$1,334

Jacksonville, FL

$1,539

-3.0%

$1,658

Kansas City, MO-KS

$1,288

-2.3%

$1,352

Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV

$1,481

-4.0%

$1,665

Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA

$2,766

-2.2%

$2,898

Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN

$1,219

-3.5%

$1,280

Memphis, TN-MS-AR

$1,222

-4.9%

$1,316

Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL

$2,382

-4.3%

$2,539

Milwaukee-Waukesha, WI

$1,671

3.8%

$1,671

Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI

$1,529

2.5%

$1,529

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN

$1,523

-8.4%

$1,681

New Orleans-Metairie, LA

NA

NA

NA

New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA

$2,876

4.1%

$2,920

Oklahoma City, OK

$1,006

0.5%

$1,023

Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL

$1,677

-5.9%

$1,810

Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD

$1,813

1.5%

$1,832

Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ

$1,540

-4.6%

$1,684

Pittsburgh, PA

$1,474

1.6%

$1,475

Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA

$1,721

2.5%

$1,760

Providence-Warwick, RI-MA

NA

NA

NA

Raleigh, NC

$1,487

-5.3%

$1,640

Richmond, VA

$1,477

-3.0%

$1,556

Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA

$2,156

-0.8%

$2,233

Rochester, NY

NA

NA

NA

Sacramento-Roseville-Folsom, CA

$1,953

3.0%

$1,968

San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX

$1,230

-8.1%

$1,353

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA

$2,888

-0.3%

$3,145

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA

$2,766

-4.3%

$3,069

San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA

$3,318

3.7%

$3,344

Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA

$2,017

-0.3%

$2,132

St. Louis, MO-IL

$1,318

-1.6%

$1,373

Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL

$1,741

-2.5%

$1,828

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC

$1,518

2.4%

$1,551

Washington-Arlington-Alexandria,DC-VA-MD-WV

$2,225

1.3%

$2,263

Methodology 

Rental data as of April 2024 for studio, 1-bedroom, or 2-bedroom units advertised as for-rent on Realtor.com®. Rental units include apartments as well as private rentals (condos, townhomes, single-family homes). We use rental sources that reliably report data each month within the top 50 largest metropolitan areas. Realtor.com® began publishing regular monthly rental trends reports in October 2020 with data history stretching back to March 2019.

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