Get ready to pay more rent, even as home prices cool off

  • The median monthly rent in February came in at $1,472, an increase of 2.4 percent compared with February 2018, according to Zillow.
  • For the typical renter, this means about $400 more per year.
  • Rents actually fell last fall for the first time in more than six years

Of course all real estate is local, with rents now significantly higher than a year ago in Orlando, Florida (+7.0 percent), Phoenix (+6.8 percent), Riverside, California (+6.2 percent), Tampa, Florida (+5.5 percent) and Pittsburgh (+4.9 percent). Rents in New York City have seen no effect from Amazon’s decision not to build a new headquarters there. Rents in Northern Virginia, where Amazon is still on track to hire thousands of employees, are expected to rise, as home sales and prices are already getting a boost from investors.

Lisa Layden owns four single-family rental properties in Arlington, Virginia, where Amazon plans to put its new offices, and said the potential new rent prospects are, “a dream.” She is changing her timeline for holding her properties.

“Perhaps I would have sold in five years. I think for me it’s 10 years because of Amazon, and that would be their full hiring over a 10-year period,” Layden said.