The New Era of Rental Prices

The New Era of Rental Prices

For renters who’ve felt the sting of rapidly increasing costs, there’s a sigh of relief on the horizon. The rapid inflation of rent prices, which has been a pressing concern for many in recent years, is showing signs of stabilization.

From Skyrocketing to Stabilizing: The New Era of Rental Prices

rental prices across the US

Analysis based on average monthly rent data for provided by CoStar Group. The data includes newly posted rents, not lease renewals, for 1,660 counties for June of each year from 2019 to 2023. Counties with fewer than 1,000 multi-units, according to Census Bureau data, were excluded.

Good news is on the horizon for renters: The rapid escalation in rental prices, which had previously seemed unstoppable, appears to be taking a pause.

Rental rollercoaster: Between 2020 and 2022, rents surged by a striking 15%, the most rapid increase in nearly a century. However, the fervor has calmed. Rent growth has reverted to pre-pandemic rates, seeing an annual growth of about 1 to 3 percent. Interestingly, in cities that recently witnessed surging rents like Austin and Atlanta, prices are now dropping. As Igor Popov, chief economist at Apartment List, observes, the rental market is “taking a breath.

Why the slowdown? A significant factor in this slowdown is the surge in housing construction. An impressive nearly 1 million new apartment units are currently under construction nationwide. By the end of 2023, over half of these are expected to be on the market. Concurrently, the demand for rentals is waning as the U.S. adjusts to post-pandemic life. The appetite for apartment living has decreased, with fewer individuals moving out and more staying in familial homes. This change has created a discrepancy between available apartments and interested renters, thereby stabilizing price growth.

more new apartments over 50 years

The Sun Belt phenomenon: The Sun Belt region, which includes parts of the Southern U.S., experienced a unique scenario. Initially, during the pandemic, there was a spike in demand as individuals sought warmer climates and more affordable living conditions, moving away from urban centers like New York. This shift led to a boom in rental prices in cities like Phoenix, Dallas, and Miami. However, the rush to meet this demand has led to an oversupply, causing rents to stabilize and even decrease in some areas.

sun belt cities rent price growth

➥ THE TAKEAWAY

The new normal: While renters can find solace in stabilizing prices and even some reductions, it’s crucial to note that the cost of renting remains substantially higher than pre-pandemic levels in many areas. Areas like Atlanta, despite witnessing recent rent reductions, still have renters paying substantially more than before the pandemic. The introduction of incentives like months of free rent indicates a market adjusting to new realities, but the days of pre-pandemic affordability seem to be a distant memory for now.

Source: The New Era of Rental Prices

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