US Rent Increases Continued to Slow in February

Redfin reported on Friday (3-10-23) that the median US asking rent increased 1.7% year-over-year to $1,937 in February. This marks the smallest increase in nearly 24 months and the lowest level in a year. A year earlier, rents were up nearly 10 times that much: 16.5%.

In the report, Redfin says February was the nineth straight month in which rent growth slowed on a year-over-year basis. Rents fell 0.3% from January. Nonetheless, the median asking rent remained 21.4% higher than in February 2020, the month before the pandemic began.

Redfin notes that rent growth has cooled as persistently high housing costs, inflation, and recession concerns and a slowdown in household formation have made people less like to move, putting a damper on demand for new leases.

According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), a jump in supply due to a boom in apartment construction has also contributed to the slowdown in rent growth. The NAHB reports the number of apartments under construction is up 24.9% year-over-year to 943,000, the highest level since 1974.

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