Charlotte, NC Market Insights Real Estate News

The Priciest Zip Codes for Renters in North Carolina in 2017

Rent Cafe most expensive zip codes in North Carolina

Key Highlights:

    • Charlotte’s urban core is home to the top 3 most expensive zip codes for renters in North Carolina
    • 15 of the state’s top 50 zip codes with the most expensive apartments are in Charlotte, 9 in Raleigh
    • Chapel Hill’s 27516 breaks the top 5 priciest zip codes for renters in the state

When it comes to apartment living, North Carolina really is a better place to be for those who rent. In spite of housing prices steadily climbing in recent years, NC remains a rather affordable housing market when compared to the rest of the country. The monthly average rent in North Carolina is $1,015, according to Yardi Matrix, well below the national average which is just over $1,300/month.

Look up your city or zip code in this interactive top 50 table:

Top Most Expensive Zip Codes in North Carolina in 2017

#Zip CodeCityCountyAverage Rent
128202CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,608
228203CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,458
328204CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,420
427516Chapel Hill Orange County$1,411
527605RaleighWake County$1,380
627403GreensboroGuilford County$1,345
727603RaleighWake County$1,336
827607RaleighWake County$1,311
928211CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,292
1027601RaleighWake County$1,267
1128277CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,261
1227514Chapel HillOrange County$1,244
1327502ApexWake County$1,184
1427519CaryWake County$1,181
1528209CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,179
1627701DurhamDurham County$1,175
1727517Chapel HillChatham County$1,163
1827518CaryWake County$1,148
1928078HuntersvilleMecklenburg County$1,145
2027523ApexWake County$1,144
2128278CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,141
2228031CorneliusDauphin County$1,127
2328262CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,125
2428270CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,124
2527540Holly SpringsWake County$1,122
2627560 (Tie)MorrisvilleWake County$1,115
2728226 (Tie)CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,115
2827513CaryWake County$1,111
2927101Winston-SalemForsyth County$1,110
3027614RaleighWake County$1,109
3127617RaleighWake County$1,107
3227606RaleighWake County$1,103
3327526Fuquay-VarinaHarnett County$1,082
3427545KnightdaleWake County$1,077
3527705DurhamDurham County$1,076
3627612RaleighWake County$1,075
3728403WilmingtonNew-Hanover County$1,072
3828105MatthewsMecklenburg County$1,071
3928216CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,069
4028273CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,068
4127703DurhamDurham County$1,062
4227587Wake ForestWake County$1,058
4328213 (Tie)CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,056
4428210 (Tie)CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,056
4528036DavidsonMecklenburg County$1,055
4627609RaleighWake County$1,052
4727520ClaytonJohnston County$1,048
4828269CharlotteMecklenburg County$1,042
4928134PinevilleMecklenburg County$1,034
5027529GarnerWake County$1,032
You are free to use the code below to embed the table on your website, by giving credit to RENTCafe:

The top 3 priciest zips in the state are in central Charlotte

It probably doesn’t come as a shocker that the most expensive apartments for rent are concentrated in Charlotte Center City. The number 1 zip code 28202 (inside the I-277 Loop) boasts an average rent of $1,608/month, which is actually 2% less than what it was a year prior. Apartments have taken over 28202 in the past few years, with as many as 5,300 market rate rentals located in this zip code as of Spring 2017, according to Yardi Matrix data. The area is buzzing with apartment construction, with over 600 brand new apartments having been opened inside the Loop over the last year.

Number 2 in the state is 28203 (Wilmore, Brookhill, Dilworth), also brimming with rental buildings, with about 5,200 apartments to choose from as of Spring 2017 and average rents sitting at $1,458/month.

At number 3, adjacent 28204 (Elizabeth, Cherry, Dilworth) has an average monthly rent of $1,420, having decreased by 6% since last year. Even though it doesn’t have such a large selection of rental apartments as the top 2 zip codes, the area is home to some impressive upscale apartment communities, such as Birkshire Dilworth, where rents can cost up to $6,450/month for a sprawling 2,600 square foot floor plan.

Not far behind, in fourth place, with rents averaging $1,411/month, is Chapel Hill‘s 27516, one of the wealthiest zip codes in the triangle area. Raleigh’s 27605 is 5th, with average rents of $1,380. In total, 4 zip codes in the capital city are among the top 10 most expensive in the state. Also in the top 10 is Greensboro‘s 27403 with an average rent of $1,345.

Mecklenburg and Wake counties have the most expensive rents in NC

Overall, rental apartments in Mecklenburg County are the most expensive, with 20 zip codes in the top 50, along with apartments in Wake County, with 19 of the top most expensive zip codes. The highest price increases, however, are not necessarily happening in the priciest zip codes. Wake County has seen some sharp increases in prices in the last year. Zip code 27523 in Apex is in the 20th place with an average rent of $1,144 but has had the highest rent increase since the same time last year, 15%.

Nationally, North Carolina is a moderately-priced rental market

Only 7 North Carolina zip codes have rents higher than the national average. And when compared to the country’s most expensive states, even the most expensive rent in NC is just a fraction of that in New York, California or Massachusets. Moreover, apartments in North Carolina are more affordable than those in most of its neighboring states. For more state by state comparisons, check out the interactive map below. Hover over the price bar to see what states are in the same price range:


  • Data compilation, analysis, and mapping done by RENTCafe using rent and construction data provided by Yardi Matrix, a RENTCafe sister company. Yardi Matrix is a business development and asset management tool for brokers, sponsors, banks and equity sources underwriting investments in the multifamily, office, industrial and self-storage sectors.
  • The average rent used in this article was calculated from the actual rents charged in apartment buildings with at least 50 rental units, located in 125 U.S. markets, totaling approximately 15 million apartment units.
  • Zip codes with less than 200 rental units and less than 3 properties were excluded.
  • Rent prices are for apartments only, no single-family homes or townhomes were included.
  • In zip codes covering more than one city, only the primary city designated by the USPS was named.

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About the author

Nadia Balint

Nadia Balint is a senior creative writer for RENTCafé. She covers news and trends in residential and commercial real estate and their impact on our everyday life, including rental housing, for-sale housing, real estate development, homeownership, market reports, insurance, landlord-tenant laws, personal finance, urban development, economy, sustainability, and social issues. Nadia holds a B.S. in Business Management from Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. You can connect with Nadia via email.

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