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June 23, 2017

The Most Expensive Zip Codes for Renters in 2017

Rents have been steadily rising across the country for the past two years, and while their growth rate has actually slowed quite a bit over the last few months, many cities are still seeing sky-high rents by historical standards. In larger cities like San Francisco and San Diego, for example, those rents are starting to push renters outward—and it’s driving up prices in surrounding suburbs and communities, too.

There are a handful of cities where rents are actually on the decline, though, so don’t lose all hope for an affordable monthly payment just yet. In fact, in 15 of the largest American markets, rents even declined last month, according to recent research from apartment search website RENTCafé. (Check out the interactive map from RENTCafé)



NYC, San Fran Claim Nation’s Priciest Markets

It’s little surprise that many of the nation’s priciest zip codes are in New York City and San Francisco—two of the most historically expensive places to live and work.

In 10282, located on the West side of Lower Manhattan, rents are almost $6,000 per month. They’re not much better in nearby 10065, 10023, 10025 or 10024 either, where rents come in at $4,898, $4,892, $4,535 and $4,525 respectively.

Three of the country’s top 20 priciest markets are in the San Francisco area, with 94129, 94105 and 94158 all clocking in with rents above $4,000. The 94219 zip, located in the Presidio neighborhood of the city, boasts average rents of $4,762—the fourth-highest in the nation.

Aside from New York and San Francisco, the only other city to make the top 20 priciest rental markets was Boston. Its 02199 zip code came in at No. 12, with rents of $4,227.

Affordable Rents are Within Reach—in the Midwest and South, at Least

Not every city in America costs an arm and a leg to rent in. In some areas, rents are as much as 14 times less than the country’s most expensive markets.

Take Wichita, Kansas, for example. With rents of just $407 per month, it comes in at 14.5 times lower than rents in the priciest part of Manhattan. You can find similar sub-$500 rents in Decatur, Alabama (35601); Memphis, Tennessee (38106); Columbus, Georgia (31903); and Fort Wayne, Indiana (46809).

Huntsville, Alabama; Louisville, Tennessee; and Gravel Ridge, Arkansas, also made the list of cheapest zip codes in the country, coming in with rents of just $503, $507 and $508 respectively. 

The views and opinions expressed herein are the author's own, and do not necessarily reflect those of EconMatters.

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