11 U.S. Cities Where Rent Is Actually Cheaper Than It Was Last Year

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Rent prices in the largest U.S. markets dipped for a second consecutive month in October, to less than $2,000 for the first time since April, new data reveals.

In 50 of the largest U.S. metro areas, median rent prices declined 0.9% in October, dropping from an average of $2,002 to $1,983, according to online brokerage Redfin's latest data

Even with these declines, U.S. rent is still up 7.8% year-over-year as of October. But there are 11 cities — up from five in September — where rent prices have defied rising inflation and are now cheaper than they were a year ago, per Redfin's data.

  1. Milwaukee, Wisconsin: -17.6%
  2. Minneapolis: -7.8%
  3. Baltimore: -3.2%
  4. Seattle: -2.7%
  5. Boston: -2.5%
  6. Austin, Texas: -2.3%
  7. Atlanta: -2.2%
  8. Columbus, Ohio: -1.7%
  9. Los Angeles: -1.1%
  10. Chicago: -1.1%
  11. Houston: -0.8%

Part of the overall drop is related to an increase in available rental units, the study says.

Additionally, "persistent inflation is shrinking renter budgets," which is "causing rent growth to cool," says Redfin Deputy Chief Economist Taylor Marr. 

Two months of dropping prices provides much-needed relief to renters, as monthly rent increases in the U.S. ranged from 0.5% to 2% over the past year. 

"We expect rent growth to slow further into 2023 as Americans continue to hunker down and more new rentals hit the market," Marr said in September.

To determine median rent, Redfin analyzed the costs of newly available leases in October using data for the 50 largest U.S. metro areas. That means that median price doesn't reflect what all renters are currently paying, just those who signed new leases.

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