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With Tight Inventory, Rents are on the Rise

Rents have been rising month after month, and if housing inventory continues to be as strapped as it is, that’s likely not changing anytime soon. According to the June 2017 National Rent Report released by Apartment List on Friday, national rents grew 0.5 percent last month, marking the fifth consecutive month U.S. rents have seen an uptick.

Though rents were either stagnant or declining throughout much of 2016, this year has been a different story.

“Given the steady price increases we’ve been seeing over the past few months, it seems that the trend of lowered growth that we saw last year has reversed itself,” Apartment List reported. “Our national rent index has already increased more in 2017 than it did in all of 2016—rents increased by just 1.6 percent over the course of last year, but are now up by 2.1 percent compared to their December 2016 level.”

Over the year, rents have risen 2.6 percent since May 2016, nearly the same annual growth seen last year, but still well below the 3.6 percent growth rate of 2015. Still, rents saw year-over-year growth in 88 of the country’s 100 largest cities.

Arlington, Texas, came in with the biggest annual growth, with rents rising 8.2 percent over the year.

“Arlington is roughly a 30-minute drive from Dallas, and that entire metro area has been experiencing rapid growth,” Apartment List reported. “Most of the Dallas area cities that we have data for experienced rent growth above the national average, for example, rents are up 4.5 percent year-over-year in Fort Worth and 3.2 percent in Dallas proper.”

Other cities to see big jumps were Tacoma, Washington; Reno, Nevada; Sacramento, California; and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Thirteen total cities saw annual growth of 5 percent or more, while another 86 also saw month-over-month growth in May.

With summer upon us, and tight housing inventory driving more potential buyers toward renting, rents are likely to continue rising in the coming months.

According to Apartment List, “We’re now beginning to enter the busy season for renting, which means that we’ll likely see rents continue to rise over the next few months. Based on the seasonal trend that we’ve seen in previous years, rents could increase by another 1.5 percent by the end of the summer.”

About Author: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a longtime writer and editor from Texas. Her resume boasts positions with The Dallas Morning News, NBC, PBS, and various other regional and national publications. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.
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