seattle rental market

Infographic: Zumper

Seattle fell two spots to become the 10th most expensive rental market in the US in December, according to Zumper’s most recent National Rent Report. The median rent for a one-bedroom unit sank 2.2 percent from the previous month, reaching $1,790, while median two-bedroom rent dropped 3.6 percent to hit $2,400.

Despite those declines, median one-bedroom rent was still up 8.5 percent year-over-year, while median two-bedroom rent was up 5.3 percent. 

Nationwide, median one- and two-bedroom apartment rental prices increased just under 1 percent month-over-month, coming in at $1,139 and $1,348, respectively, in December. Skyrocketing rental prices in markets like Philadelphia have boosted the national median rent about 2.6 percent since 2015.

The cheapest rent of all can be found in Toledo, Ohio, where a one-bedroom apartment rents for a median of $430. In other words, for the median price of a one-bedroom apartment in Seattle, you could rent four apartments in Toledo. If you live in San Francisco, where a one bedroom costs a median of $3,350, you could rent seven apartments in Toledo.

Sound tempting? You may miss the mountains and city life of Seattle, but Toledo has its charms. Head out to the Cedar Point Amusement Park, a 364-acre water park with 75 heart-pounding rides, or ride a high-wire bike at the city’s hands-on science museum. You could also hit up a Toledo Mud Hens game and then go grab some chili dogs and fried pickles at famous restaurant Tony Packo’s.

That said, you may not want to pack your bags for Toledo just yet. After all, Seattle rent prices are showing signs of dropping. Compared to a quarter ago, rent prices are down 2.8 percent in downtown Seattle, 3.5 percent in the University District and 3.1 percent in Queen Anne/Magnolia neighborhood. New year, new rental market? Only time will tell. 

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