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Rents in El Paso, San Francisco Drop Sharply

Douglas A. McIntyre

It would be hard to find a more improbable duo than El Paso, Texas, and San Francisco. However, the two cities had the largest percentage drop in residential rent rates in the past year, according to HomeUnion, a real estate investment management firm.

In the rental market in El Paso, rates dropped 7.1% to $1,160. Rents in San Francisco were over three times higher at $4,320. They dropped 5%, the second most of any city.

A number of the markets with large decreases were those with very low rents. Little Rock rents dropped 1.8% to $920. Rents in Pittsburgh dropped 3.6% to $1,060. Rents in Birmingham dropped 2.3% to $1,000.

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Cities with large rent rate increase were concentrated on the West Coast and in Florida. Rents in Seattle rose the most of any city, up 6.7% to $2,220. Rents in Los Angeles rose 4.2% to $2,540. Rents on San Diego were up 4% to $2,520. In Florida, rents in Orlando rose 4.6% to $1,420, while rents in Tampa rose 4.1% to $1,380. Rents in Jacksonville rose 3.2% to $1,320.

Steve Hovland, director of research at HomeUnion said:

 Many of the metros at the top of our list have these two common characteristics: strong job growth, and residents who prefer renting over homeownership as median home prices remain relatively high and the cost of mortgage debt continues to increase.

Meanwhile, a degree of softness has impacted the most heated rental markets, like San Francisco and San Jose, which has pushed those metros to the bottom of our list, We’re seeing declines in rents for the most expensive Bay Area neighborhoods, as well as slowing rent growth in San Jose submarkets. However, rents remain extremely high on a relative basis in both these markets – in the $4,000 range.

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Numbers were based on single family rentals (SFRs).

The entire list:

Metro

SFR Rent

Year-Over-Year Rent Change

Seattle

$2,220

6.7%

Dallas

$1,600

5.6%

Atlanta

$1,280

4.9%

Phoenix

$1,340

4.8%

Orlando

$1,420

4.6%

Raleigh

$1,460

4.2%

Los Angeles

$2,540

4.2%

Tampa

$1,380

4.1%

San Diego

$2,520

4.0%

Oakland

$2,880

4.0%

Portland

$1,840

3.9%

Philadelphia

$1,640

3.4%

Jacksonville

$1,320

3.2%

Cleveland

$1,200

3.2%

Orange County

$3,120

2.8%

Austin

$1,700

2.8%

Boston

$2,460

2.8%

San Antonio

$1,400

2.4%

Denver

$2,060

2.3%

Memphis

$1,040

2.1%

Here is a list of markets with the lowest rent growth in the United States:

Metro

SFR Rent

Year-Over-Year Rent Change

El Paso, Texas

$1,160

-7.1%

San Francisco

$4,320

-5.0%

Oklahoma City

$1,140

-4.6%

Wichita, Kan.

$1,000

-4.3%

Pittsburgh

$1,060

-3.6%

Houston

$1,600

-2.8%

Miami

$2,200

-2.7%

San Jose

$3,660

-2.6%

Birmingham, Ala.

$1,000

-2.3%

Little Rock

$920

-1.9%

Baltimore

$1,820

-0.6%

New York City

$2,200

-0.4%

Milwaukee

$1,280

0.8%

Honolulu

$2,960

0.9%

Washington, D.C.

$2,120

1.3%

Chicago

$1,580

1.3%

Indianapolis

$1,160

1.4%

Albuquerque, N.M.

$1,040

1.5%

New Orleans

$1,280

1.9%

Las Vegas

$1,360

1.9%

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