As of June 2022, the median rent cost for a 1 bedroom apartment is $1,876, a 23.9% increase from June 2020. Inflation is increasing the cost of everything, from healthcare to groceries and the cost of living. Additionally, all major cities across the United States are seeing a spike in rent costs, especially for one-bedroom apartments.
Renting A One-Bedroom Apartment
Around the country, rent prices have been skyrocketing since the second half of 2021, reaching an all-time median high of $1,876 as of June 2022. According to economists and real estate experiences, you should anticipate rent to continue to rise an additional 10 percent throughout the second half of 2022. With the pandemic-era rent and eviction freezes expiring earlier in the year, the economy is trying to rebound from the "pause" that the pandemic placed on the world.
At the height of the pandemic, cities such as New York were appealing to renters with ultra-low rent and months of free rent. However, as the covid-deal leases ended towards the end of 2021, many renters found themselves unable to afford the new cost of the rent. Unfortunately, the higher rental rates are staying consistent and rapidly increasing. In addition to rental inflation, the minimum wage rates around the country are not rising with the cost of living; leaving many renters unsure about how they will budget their income and afford rent.
Where is rent the highest and the lowest?
Although rent inflation is a national crisis and has affected all metropolitan areas, some cities are experiencing a much slower rate of increase than others. For example, cities like Miami, New York City, and Boston saw 37.4 percent, 21.1 percent, and 23.6 percent increases, respectively. Compared to New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Sacramento, they saw 6.6percent 6.8 percent, and 7.3 percent rent increases, respectively.
Below is a chart of the Average Overall Rent and Median Cost for 1 Bedroom Apartments 50 Largest Metropolitan Areas.
Median Cost of One-Bedroom Apartments
|Metro Area||Overall Median Rent||1-Bedroom Median Rent|
|Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA||$1,858||$1,731|
|Austin-Round Rock, TX||$1,864||$1,720|
|Buffalo-Cheektowaga- Niagara Falls, NY||$1,345||$1,195|
|Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX||$ 1,702||$1,567|
|Denver- Aurora-Lakewood, CO||$2,032||$1,900|
|Detroit-Warren- Dearborn, MI||$1,445||$1,195|
|Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT||$1,755||$1,606|
|Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX||$1,450||$1,333|
|Kansas City, MO-KS||$1,326||$1,252|
|Las Vegas-Henderson- Paradise, NV||$1,650||$1,514|
|Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA||$3,051||$2,798|
|Louisville /Jefferson County, KY-IN||$1,253||$1,148|
|Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL||$1,580||$2,494|
|Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI||$1,580||$1,470|
|Minneapolis- St Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI||$1,597||$1,502|
|New Orleans-Metairie, LA||$1,765||$1,640|
|New York- Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA||$2,989||$2,693|
|Oklahoma City, OK||$1,033||$933|
|Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA||$2,622||$2,203|
|San Antonia-New Braunfels, TX||$1,413||$1,296|
|San Diego-Carlsbad, CA||$3,182||$2,914|
|San Fransico- Oakland-Hayward, CA||$3,171||$2,914|
|San Jose-Sunnyvale-Sanata Clara, CA||$ 3,324||$3,104|
|St. Louis, MO-IL||$1,371||$1,292|
|Tampa-St.Petersburg- Clearwater, FL||$2,109||$1,899|
|Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC||$1,581||$1,493|
Future Market Predictions
As we enter what many real estate experts call the busiest season of the year (August to September), the demand and rental costs show no sign of slowing down. Typically the winter months are much slower in terms of renters moving out and searching for a new place, which naturally drives down the cost of the rent. However, experts are confident that the normal seasonal dip in cost will be significantly less if it happens this year.
Negotiating Lower Rent
As rent increases and inflation show no sign of slowing down, you must know your rights as a renter and how to negotiate your rent cost. Knowing how to negotiate your rent and key factors to include in conversations with your landlord or leasing office can not only lower your bottom line cost but also provide some benefit to your landlord. Here are four rules and tips that you should be considered when preparing to negotiate your rent:
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Step 1: Know What You Want
You must go into negotiations knowing how much you're willing to pay and the maximum amount you've budgeted for rent. Before meeting with your landlord, you should do market research on other apartments in your area; you can use popular sites like Zillow, Craigslist, and Streeteasy. This will allow you to gauge how much your apartment rent should be. After your market research, you should figure out your ideal price, and it is best to set a range within which you could work. The range should be a number below and above your ideal price.
Step 2: Make Your Offer Mutually Beneficial
Remember, your landlord's bottom line is to make as much money as possible; they will not lower your rent just because you asked nicely. When negotiating, you must make a mutually beneficial offer to yourself as a tenant and your landlord. Here are a few reasons and negotiate points that can lead your landlord to lower your rent while also being satisfied with what they are getting in return:
- Prepay months in advance
- Sign an extended lease
- Offer to extend the lease termination notice
- Make deals for referrals to increase building occupancy
Step 3: Know When to Negotiate
Timing your negotiation is crucial. If you're negotiating to stay in the same unit, the closer it gets to your lease termination date, the more your landlord will try to keep you as a tenant. Nevertheless, it's good to start negotiating the cost and terms of a lease renewal about 2-3 months before your termination date.
Step 4: Have the Right Information/ Script Ready
After you've done all your research and have an idea of how and when to approach your landlord about negotiating your rent, it's time to plan exactly what you want to say. Start by reminding your landlord about your renting history ( if you were a good tenant) and how much you've enjoyed the building, amenities, etc. Then, you can go into the information you've gathered through research like market comparison on nearby units or offering to sign a longer lease agreement.
How To Lower Your Cost and Budget Your Money
Suppose you cannot lower your rental cost, or general inflation is causing you to reevaluate your budget and spending. In that case, there are ways that you can reset your budget, reduce monthly expenses, and save money. Here are four steps to reassess your budget and create a new plan to save money.
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Assess Your Current Financial Situation
To start building your new budget, you should sit down for a few hours and assess your current finances. Take time to review all the details and areas of concern. Two key questions to ask yourself:
- How much liquid cash do you have in your checking and savings account? How much is your emergency fund?
- What are your current credit card balances? Can you make a minimum payment or more on them?
Determine How Much You Are Spending
The second component of assessing your finances is determining how much you are spending. Look at recurring subscriptions; how much is spent when you go out to eat? What have the monthly rent and utilities cost? How much is insurance each month? Items like rent and insurance are non-negotiable necessities that will be recurring every month. Next, look at items that are not deemed a necessity. Here are some ways to cut back on expenses:
- When eating out, look for places that are inexpensive and cheaper than your standard restaurant
- When going to movies and plays, look for discounted admissions tickets
- Switch to a more affordable gym membership
- Find discounts for monthly streaming subscriptions.
Avoid Major Purchases
If you are looking at new budget constraints with inflation, job loss, or a never-ending job search, it's best to avoid major purchases such as a new car or TV.
Create an Updated Budget
Once you have to reevaluate your finances, you can start building your new budget. It's essential to focus on ensuring your necessities, such as shelter, food, health insurance, and some form of transportation, can be paid monthly. After those items are accounted for, you can add what items are what's instead of needs and fit within your new budget.
With the median rent cost for a one-bedroom apartment $1,876, the rental market is showing no signs of slowing down. As inflation is on the rise, we expect rent costs and demand for apartments to continue to climb. Although the rent increase is inevitable, knowing what direction the market is heading and how to prepare yourself as a tenant can pay off in the long run. In this post-COVID rental market, where extreme deals are slowly fading out, knowing how and when to negotiate your rent can save you hundreds of dollars.
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Originally from Houston, Texas, Alexandra is currently getting her Master's in Public Health with a health policy certificate at Columbia University. One of her life goals is to own her own art gallery!