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These are the most-expensive (and least-expensive) US cities for renters, a new report says

An apartment building at 300 Marlborough St., shown in 2013.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

Apartment rentals in Boston are downright expensive: It’s a fact and it’s not getting better. But a new ranking released last week shows three other US cities where renters have it even worse.

Boston was ranked the fourth-most-expensive city for renters in the United States, with the median monthly rent of $2,600 on a newly listed one-bedroom apartment, according to a July report by rental company Zumper.

San Jose, Calif., in the heart of Silicon Valley, took the No. 3 spot with a median monthly rent of $2,710 for a one-bedroom. Nearby San Francisco came in at No. 2 at $3,100 a month, and New York City took the top spot with a staggering median monthly rent of $3,780 per month for a one bedroom.


All four cities maintained their rankings for the second year in a row.

Nationwide, the median monthly price for newly listed one-bedrooms climbed 11 percent from a year ago to $1,450, according to the report. But that was just a fraction of the increase seen in New York City, where the median monthly rent climbed 41 percent over the past year — and 5 percent from June.

High home prices and rising interest rates are partly fueling the trend.

“Many would-be buyers are opting out of the market, creating additional demand for rentals,” said Zumper CEO Anthemos Georgiades in the report.

People are also relocating to places like New York City at a faster rate than pre-pandemic times. In San Francisco, tech workers are returning, and rents are inching back up toward pre-COVID levels, according to the report.

Demand for rentals has also increased in lower cost of living states like Tennessee and North Carolina. The report notes that rentals in every major city in both Tennessee and North Carolina have trended upward for the past two years.


Six of the top 10 most-expensive cities are in California.

By contrast, the cheapest cities in the country for renters are Akron, Ohio, with a median monthly rent of $640 for a one-bedroom, followed by Wichita, Kansas, with a median of $700, and Lubbock, Texas, also at $700.

An analysis of the study published by Bloomberg notes that Akron, Wichita, and Lubbock are the only places in the country where “rents are lower than monthly car payments.” The estimated typical payment for a new car hit $730 a month in June, a new record, according to data from Cox Automotive and Moody’s Analytics.

While the July report shows substantial price increases, and “rent prices will likely keep climbing across much of the country,” Georgiades said, “the stratospheric price hikes we saw throughout much of the pandemic will likely slow as consumers continue to tighten their wallets.”

The 10 most-expensive cities for renters (based on the median rental cost of a one-bedroom apartment):

1. New York, $3,780

2. San Francisco, $3,100

3. San Jose, Calif., $2,710

4. Boston, $2,600

5. Miami, $2,500

6. San Diego, $2,430

7. Washington, D.C., $2,410

8. Los Angeles, $2,400

9. Oakland, Calif., $2,200

10. Santa Ana, Calif., $2,070

The cheapest cities for renters (median rent on one-bedroom apartment):

1. Akron, Ohio, $640

2. Wichita, Kansas, $700

2. Lubbock, Texas, $700

3. Shreveport, La., $740

4. Lexington, Ky., $760

5. Laredo, Texas, $840

6. Tallahassee, Fla., $860

7. Oklahoma City, $860


8. Baton Rouge, La., $870

9. Syracuse, N.Y., $880

10. El Paso, Texas, $890

See the full ranking, and read the full report at Zumper.com.

Brittany Bowker can be reached at brittany.bowker@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @brittbowker and on Instagram @brittbowker.