There’s Good News and Bad News About Rent in Boston

According to an analysis of rent prices in September.
Photo by Greg DuBois

Photo by Greg DuBois

Across the country, the apartment market in 2016 has continued to see an increase in rent prices. But this September, rent growth finally came to a halt.

According to a new analysis from RentCafe, September marked the first month of deceleration in rent growth this year—prices fell a whole 0.1 percent overall. While national trends don’t always affect Boston, this one does, and it offers both good news and bad news for our city.

The report signals that Boston’s overheated rental market is starting to cool off. In other words, the good news has to do with rising rents. It turns out Boston is one of America’s biggest cities with the slowest growing rents. It showed a 2.2 percent increase over the past year. Compare that to Sacramento, the city with the fastest growing rents, at 12.3 percent. Boston was beat only by Cleveland, Ohio, which showed a 2.3 percent increase rate, but had a much lower average rent.

Make no mistake, Boston still has a long way to go before anyone’s pocket sees results. That’s because we have the third-highest rents in the nation. Bostonians shell out out an average $3,191 on housing every month. The renters of Cleveland, on the other hand, pay $949 per month. (Ouch.)

At least there was some good news, right?


Madeline Bilis Associate Editor at Boston Magazine @madelinebilis
mbilis@bostonmagazine.com