20 Cities Hit Hardest By Rising Rents

April 3, 2019

High rents continue to wreak havoc on Americans’ pocketbooks. “Rental affordability is a significant challenge for metropolitan areas across the United States,” says Steve Guggenmos, vice president of Freddie Mac Multifamily Research and Modeling. “Our research shows that supply just hasn’t kept pace with demand in many metros, and that’s pushing affordable rents out of reach for millions of American families.”

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Of the top 50 largest metros, Miami and San Diego are the two most rent-burdened in the country, according to Freddie Mac’s analysis.

“What tends to be lost in the analysis is the impact of high rents on tenants who earn well below the median renter income,” says Guggenmos. “Firefighters, police officers, teachers, and other members of a city’s vital workforce earn only modestly more than their suburban or rural counterparts. As a result, they often struggle to afford housing in the communities in which they serve.”

The top 20 most rent-burdened metros, according to Freddie Mac’s analysis are:

  1. Miami
  2. San Diego
  3. Los Angeles
  4. New York
  5. Orlando, Fla.
  6. New Orleans
  7. Tampa, Fla.
  8. San Jose, Calif.
  9. Riverside, Calif.
  10. Virginia Beach, Va.
  11. Denver
  12. Las Vegas
  13. San Francisco
  14. Philadelphia
  15. Portland, Ore.
  16. Chicago
  17. Atlanta
  18. Sacramento, Calif.
  19. Austin, Texas
  20. Richmond, Va.

High-cost cities such as San Francisco and Washington, D.C., are noticeably absent from Freddie Mac’s list of most rent-burdened metros. Researchers note that while rents are high in these areas, incomes are also high to help with affordability.

Rental Burden by Metro,” Freddie Mac (April 2, 2019)