The high cost of renting is a harsh reality for many Americans, with median prices in some US metro areas nearing $3,000 per month. However, according to the Monthly Rental Report from Realtor.com, there are still some metros among the country’s 50 largest markets where renters can find relatively affordable options. In fact, Oklahoma City is the only large metro where renters can find a median-priced apartment for less than $1,000 per month, making it the most affordable option with a median monthly rental price of $982 in January.
As per the report, there are ten markets where the median monthly rents are below $1,300. Out of these, five are located in the Midwest, four in the South, and one in the Northeast. However, none of them are situated in the West.
The least expensive markets are: Oklahoma City ($982), Louisville, Ky. ($1,167), Birmingham, Ala. ($1,178), Rochester, N.Y. ($1,235), Columbus, Ohio ($1,242), Indianapolis ($1,266), Memphis, Tenn. ($1,274), St. Louis, Mo. ($1,279), Cleveland ($1,290), Kansas City, Mo./Kan. ($1,298).
Those seeking the most favorable rental rates should act fast, as the costs in these metropolitan areas, although the most affordable among the top 50, are increasing more quickly than in other parts of the country.
Realtor.com’s Chief Economist, Danielle Hale, warns that despite offering some relief from high rents, the lower-priced metros tend to be highly competitive and in demand. This could mean that the lower prices will not last long. Additionally, many of these affordable metros have seen a decrease in the number of available rental homes, which could lead to an increase in prices. In January 2023, cities such as Indianapolis, Birmingham, Columbus, Kansas City, Cleveland, and Rochester, which are among the more affordable metros, experienced some of the fastest year-over-year price increases, leaving few areas that can maintain their current level of affordability.