Start of Fall Doesn’t Cool U.S. Rental Markets: Rents Hit $1,167 in September

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While the hot summer months tend to be when the U.S. sees the highest rental market growth, September 2015 certainly didn’t bring a slowdown.

Mainly supported by the strengthening employment picture and the ongoing migration of Millennials to urban areas, the average apartment rent rose 6.8% year-over-year, hitting $1,167 in September, according to data from Yardi Matrix. This is another record-breaking figure and the highest level of post-recession growth yet.

Apartments rent growth September 2015

Portland Far and Away the Leader in Rent Growth, Outranks San Francisco, Denver

While Southeastern metros are seeing consistent growth broadly in terms of rental prices, it’s the Pacific Northwest and the West that post the most extensive increases. Here are some key takeaways, as noted by the Matrix report:

  • Portland rents have risen by a staggering 16.3% year-over-year. San Francisco, Denver, Sacramento, and Seattle are all cities seeing quite a bit of growth as well while Atlanta, Orlando, and Tampa are the Southern cities with the highest year-over-year growth percentages.
  • Richmond, Washington D.C., and Baltimore once again were near the bottom of the list of major metro areas in terms of rental growth.
  • Looking at regional trends, the San Fernando area showed a 9.8% rental increase, while the Southwest Florida Coast was similarly impressive at 9.5%. Tacoma came in at 9.0%.
  • One of the primary contributors to the continual growth in most U.S. rental markets is the improvement in employment numbers: 60% of Yardi’s Top 30 metros have added at least 3% to their population’s employment rate.
  • The Southeast has the best showing in terms of economic and employment related numbers, with Atlanta, Orlando, Miami, and Tampa at the forefront. In each of these metro areas, the year-over-year rental growth has been above the national average of 6.8%.

What Can You Get for $1,167 in Some of the Country’s Hottest Markets?

If you’re wondering what exactly the national average rental price of $1,167 gets you in three of the top U.S. markets, consider these properties, located in Portland, Dallas, and Kansas City.


Rents may be on the upswing in Portland yet there still are plenty of good deals available. You can enjoy high style and modern living at the Freedom Center – Portland’s first large-scale micro-studio apartment community. Located in the thriving Pearl District, this urban community features sustainable design, stylish amenities, and relatively affordable rental rates for the area. Rent ranges from $1,050 to $1,200 for 299-square-foot studios.

Rent ranges from $1,050 to $1,200 for studios at the Freedom Center in Portland


Dallas is a city that’s seen a tremendous uptick in economic opportunities and corporate growth. This is combined with the city’s burgeoning cultural environment, creating one of the most desirable rental markets in the country. An 846 square-foot one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment at Manor House costs renters $1,174. For this price, you’re centrally located in downtown Dallas and enjoy interior features such as custom stained concrete flooring, floor-to-ceiling windows with panoramic views, and spacious terraces with solid quartz railing.

Rent an apartment at the Manor House in Dallas for $1,174

Kansas City

As of September 2015, Kansas City had a year-to-date rental growth rate of 4.4% and a projected growth rate of 4.5%. If you’re an apartment renter in this Midwestern metro, for $1,179 you might like to change to spacious townhome living at Bennington Park Townhomes. These 1,280-square-foot two-bedroom homes are located in Northeast Kansas City and feature large gourmet kitchens, fireplaces, and a saltwater pool.

Bennington Park Townhomes in Kansas City

Are you looking for a new place to rent? We’ve definitely got you covered, with countless rental listings in all major cities across the U.S., for all tastes and budgets.

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Amalia Otet is an online content developer and creative writer for RENTCafé. She loves all things real estate and strives to live beautifully, one green step at a time.

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