Rental Market Tracker: Rents Jumped 7% in a Month, Up 21% From 2020

by Real estate financingMission+
17 minutes read

Increase in rents outpaced the increase in the monthly cost of buying a home.

Average monthly rents increased 21% nationwide over the past year and 7% in a single month, the highest annual and monthly growth rates in at least two years—as far back as Redfin’s rental data goes. The national median monthly mortgage payment for homebuyers climbed at about the same annual rate—20%—but rose just 1% from October. Rapidly increasing housing costs are a big contributor to overall inflation, which hit 6.8% in November, its highest level since 1982.

“First inflation came for the for-sale housing market, and now it is coming for the rental market,” said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather. “Many people have been priced out of the for-sale market and are looking to rent instead, but that demand is pushing up rents. Anyone who bought a home before this year can pat themselves on the back because their mortgage payments are fixed, meaning their biggest recurring expense is immune to inflation. If you are looking to buy or rent now, there’s nowhere to hide from inflation when it comes to housing costs. The good news is that the tight labor market means it’s a great time to move somewhere more affordable. Chances are good that no matter where you go, you’ll be able to find a new job relatively quickly.”

Rental Market Summary November 2021 Month-Over-Month Year-Over-Year
Average Monthly Rent $1,985 6.8% 20.5%
Median Monthly Mortgage Payment for Homebuyers w/ 5% down payment $1,551 1.1% 19.9%

Rents and Homebuyer Mortgage Payments Both Up Over 20% From 2020

Rent-price increases outpaced mortgage payment increases for new homebuyers in 19 of the 50 largest metro areas in the U.S. during November.

Rents Rose Sharply in November

Rents are Up Over 30% In Many Major Metro Areas

The 10 metro areas with the biggest increases in rent prices—up 28% year over year or more—were almost exclusively in Florida and New York. The exception is Austin, TX where rents were up 30%.

Top 10 Metro Areas With Fastest-Rising Rents Year Over Year

  1. Miami, FL (35%)
  2. Fort Lauderdale, FL (35%)
  3. West Palm Beach, FL (35%)
  4. New York, NY (34%)
  5. Newark, NJ (34%)
  6. Nassau County, NY (34%)
  7. New Brunswick, NJ (34%)
  8. Jacksonville, FL (33%)
  9. Austin, TX (30%)
  10. Tampa, FL (28%)

Only Kansas City & St. Louis saw rents decline year over year

  1. Kansas City, MO (-2.3%)
  2. St. Louis, MO (-0.3%)

Only two metro areas saw a decrease in rent in November compared to a year earlier: Rents fell 2% in Kansas City, MO and less than 1% in St. Louis, MO.

Year-Over-Year Change in Rents and Median Monthly Mortgage Payments for Homebuyers, November 2021

Region Average Rent Year-Over-Year Change in Average Rent Monthly Mortgage (5% down) Year-Over-Year Change in Monthly Mortgage (5% down) Difference Between Year-Over-Year Change in 5% Down Mortgage Payment & Rent
Anaheim, CA $3,422 11.7% $3,779 22.2% 11 pts
Atlanta, GA $2,035 15.6% $1,414 28.6% 13 pts
Austin, TX $2,269 30.0% $1,936 36.4% 6 pts
Baltimore, MD $2,072 17.8% $1,333 6.2% -12 pts
Boston, MA $3,645 23.0% $2,465 15.3% -8 pts
Charlotte, NC $1,807 15.6% $1,463 26.3% 11 pts
Chicago, IL $2,360 8.9% $1,172 12.5% 4 pts
Cincinnati, OH $1,415 18.5% $988 15.6% -3 pts
Cleveland, OH $1,336 5.6% $757 11.2% 6 pts
Columbus, OH $1,433 9.8% $1,111 18.1% 8 pts
Dallas, TX $2,070 27.6% $1,540 23.0% -5 pts
Denver, CO $2,700 17.1% $2,178 21.8% 5 pts
Detroit, MI $1,577 12.4% $727 16.9% 5 pts
Fort Lauderdale, FL $2,983 35.0% $1,455 18.4% -17 pts
Fort Worth, TX $2,070 27.6% $1,313 27.0% -1 pts
Houston, TX $1,800 12.7% $1,271 21.5% 9 pts
Indianapolis, IN $1,293 10.5% $1,010 16.0% 6 pts
Jacksonville, FL $1,627 33.5% $1,313 26.0% -7 pts
Kansas City, MO $1,388 -2.3% $1,091 12.2% 14 pts
Las Vegas, NV $1,798 23.2% $1,596 28.0% 5 pts
Los Angeles, CA $3,422 11.7% $3,294 17.6% 6 pts
Miami, FL $2,983 35.0% $1,697 24.7% -10 pts
Milwaukee, WI $1,923 21.6% $1,071 14.8% -7 pts
Minneapolis, MN $1,865 6.6% $1,374 14.0% 7 pts
Montgomery County, PA $2,243 13.1% $1,576 14.2% 1 pts
Nashville, TN $1,794 8.9% $1,596 22.5% 14 pts
Nassau County, NY $3,751 34.3% $2,348 13.5% -21 pts
New Brunswick, NJ $3,751 34.3% $1,718 16.2% -18 pts
New York, NY $3,751 34.3% $2,598 14.0% -20 pts
Newark, NJ $3,751 34.3% $1,823 8.8% -26 pts
Oakland, CA $3,375 9.9% $3,677 12.6% 3 pts
Orlando, FL $2,023 27.7% $1,414 24.6% -3 pts
Philadelphia, PA $2,243 13.1% $1,083 13.7% 1 pts
Phoenix, AZ $2,016 21.5% $1,738 32.6% 11 pts
Pittsburgh, PA $1,637 3.0% $852 14.1% 11 pts
Portland, OR $2,373 27.5% $2,081 18.9% -9 pts
Providence, RI $2,175 8.4% $1,536 19.7% 11 pts
Riverside, CA $2,621 17.9% $2,097 23.2% 5 pts
Sacramento, CA $2,565 21.0% $2,223 21.1% 0 pts
San Antonio, TX $1,309 2.3% $1,233 23.0% 21 pts
San Diego, CA $3,049 10.4% $3,132 22.0% 12 pts
San Francisco, CA $3,375 9.9% $6,579 18.3% 8 pts
San Jose, CA $3,296 8.3% $5,591 19.8% 12 pts
Seattle, WA $2,844 24.9% $2,889 18.0% -7 pts
St. Louis, MO $1,443 -0.3% $909 12.4% 13 pts
Tampa, FL $2,065 28.4% $1,336 27.3% -1 pts
Virginia Beach, VA $1,663 17.9% $1,152 9.7% -8 pts
Warren, MI $1,577 12.4% $1,061 13.7% 1 pts
Washington, DC $2,544 12.5% $2,000 14.1% 2 pts
West Palm Beach, FL $2,983 35.0% $1,616 29.9% -5 pts
National $1,985 20.6% $1,551 19.9% -1 pts

Methodology

Redfin’s rent-versus-own analysis uses data from more than 20,000 apartment buildings across the US. The report combines rental data on all sizes of apartments for rent with home sales data on all residential home sales (single-family, townhouse and condos) from public records and the multiple listing service (MLS). When this report refers to the median mortgage payment for new homebuyers, it is based on a 5% down payment, the median sale price during the month and the average mortgage interest rate for the month. The report uses a 5% down payment in order to be comparable to what an average renter may be able to reasonably achieve in savings.

Redfin analyzed home sales data from the MLS, and public records and rent prices from RentPath, across the 50 largest metro areas in the US. Monthly rental prices in this report are not directly comparable to monthly homebuyer mortgage payments, since the mix of homes available to rent and the mix of homes being purchased differ in location, size and quality of home within each metro area. For example, most of the homes being purchased may be in the less expensive suburbs of the metropolitan area, while the apartments being rented may be closer to the more expensive city core.

It is also important to note that the prices in this report reflect the current costs of new leases and new mortgages during each time period. In other words, the average rent of $3,343 in the Anaheim“>Anaheim metro area is not the average of what all renters are paying, but the average cost of apartments that were available for new renters during August 2021. Likewise, the median monthly mortgage payment of $3,570 in Anaheim“>Anaheim was only for homes that sold during the month of August 2021, not for all homeowners.

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