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Rental prices in Seattle’s metro area have grown exponentially over the past year

An aerial photo of houses in Seattle's Queen Anne neighborhood.

An aerial photo of houses in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood.

fotoVoyager / Getty Images / iStockphoto

Rental prices in Seattle have risen nearly 19% since that time last year, dwarfing average prices, with rents rising in Washington state – 17.8% – and across the United States – 17.1% – over the same period.

That result comes from Apartment List’s latest report on rental rates in the Seattle metro area. The report also found that prices in the city rose by 1% over the past month. This is the second month in a row that rents have risen in Seattle after a slight drop in January, the report said.

Right now, the average monthly rental price for a one bedroom apartment in Seattle is $ 1,681. The average rent for a two-bedroom is $ 2,097. While these prices are likely to seem high, they are actually some of the more affordable prices in the Seattle metro area.

The average rent for one and two bedroom apartments in Woodinville is $ 2,490 and $ 2,810 respectively. In Bellevue, those numbers are $ 2,400 and $ 2,570. In Redmond they are $ 2,280 and $ 2,550. In Kirkland, they are $ 2,090 and $ 2,430.

Each of these cities has experienced colossal double-digit increases in rental rates from year to year: Woodinville (20.1%), Bellevue (20.9%), Redmond (17.7%) Kirkland (14.8%). In fact, all 13 cities in the Seattle metro area mentioned on the Apartment List report saw rents rise over the past year.

The same goes for month-on-month increases, with the exception of Tacoma. Rental prices have actually fallen by 0.2% in the last month. The median price for a one-bedroom, two-bedroom apartment in Tacoma is $ 1,220 and $ 1,600, respectively.

Tacoma also had the smallest year-on-year increase in rental rates: 9.1%. To the south, rental rates in Lakewood saw the smallest increase from month to month. The price of one- and two-bedroom apartments grew by 0.2% over the past month to $ 1,170 and $ 1,540, respectively.

The Seattle metro area is not alone in shooting up rental prices, according to the report. In New York City, rental rates rose 33.3% over the past year. In Phoenix and Austin, rental rates rose by 25.4% and 22.6%, respectively, over the same period.

The report does not explain why rental prices have risen dramatically, but national experts say there are likely to be several reasons for this. These include shortages of supply combined with booming demand; housing prices are high, retaining potential buyers in the rental market; an influx of wealthy tenants; and measures that kept prices low during the coronavirus pandemic, such as rent freezes, expire as the country tries to get back to life before the pandemic.

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