San Diego Is 5th Most Expensive Metro Area for Renters

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A rendering of the Atmosphere affordable housing development planned for downtown San Diego Courtesy Wakeland Housing and Development Corporation

San Diego is the fifth most expensive metro area for renters in the United States — almost as expensive as New York.

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The report released Thursday by Zillow, an online real estate marketplace, found that rents nationwide are rising at the fastest pace in two years, with San Diego experiencing a 5.1 percent year-over-year increase.

Here were average monthly rents in the five most expensive metro areas for renters in April:

  • San Jose/Silicon Valley — $3,287
  • San Francisco — $3,162
  • Los Angeles — $2,498
  • New York — $2,372
  • San Diego — $2,330
  • National Average — $1,364

“There are tremendous incentives to get into homeownership these days: mortgage access is improving, interest rates are low, and home values remain below prior peaks,” said Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries. “But it will be increasingly difficult for many renters to realize these benefits as this country’s growing rental affordability crisis continues to worsen.”

Humphries said rising rent makes it difficult for many potential homeowners to save for a down payment, and new construction is not keeping pace with demand.

In San Diego, rising rents are coming at a time when when many established neighborhoods are fighting developers seeking to increase density with new housing. A study by Point Loma Nazarene University last month found that San Diego is building fewer new homes than necessary to keep up with population growth.

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