Rent prices drop for a fifth straight month, report shows. See how Tampa Bay fares

The latest report shows that the housing market continues to sway in favor of renters after an increase in construction rates of multifamily homes.

In September, median asking rents in the 50 largest metros dropped to $1,747, down $29 from the peak in July 2022. 

Rent prices, while still significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels, dipped annually for units of all sizes for the fifth month in a row.

“As rents ease and both home prices and mortgage rates continue to climb, it’s become more economical to rent than to buy in nearly all major markets,” said Chief Economist at Danielle Hale in a statement. “However, even with an influx of new apartment units coming onto the market and putting a lid on rent growth, renters are claiming these new apartments faster than before the pandemic.”

Throughout the Tampa Bay area, the median asking rent for a one- to two-bedroom unit is $1,720, a 4% decrease year-over-year. 

The trend continued in other southern metros, which is home to the top three metros with the most significant year-over-year rent declines: Austin, Texas (-7.3%), Dallas (-6.2%) and Orlando (-5.4%).

Nationally, median asking rent was 1,747, a 0.7% decline year-over-year, but a 24% increase since 2019.

According to the Census Survey of Market Absorption of New Multifamily Units, the first quarter of 2023 saw the completion of 82,310 apartments and buildings featuring five or more units. Within three months following completion, 61% of these newly finished apartments were rented, indicating a strong demand. 

Notably, units with asking rents below $1,250 exhibited the highest absorption rates during this period, highlighting a pronounced demand for affordable rental options.

The report highlights that in September, the annual completion rate of multifamily buildings with five or more units stood at 445,000 units, which increased 10.1% month-over-month and 15.0% year-over-year. 

While this additional rental inventory is a positive development for renters, the rapid rate at which these units are absorbed suggests that demand in the rental market remains strong.

The full methodology can be found here.


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