9 cities where it's getting cheaper to rent this year

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It's Not Just the Poor Who Can't Make Rent

It will come as a surprise to no one that rent prices in most of the country's largest markets are expected to rise in 2016, according to a forecast from real estate data company Zillow. But there's some good news in that forecast, even for people who live in some of the most expensive cities in the country: Rents won't increase as much as they have been, Zillow predicts.

For example, in 2015, rents in San Francisco grew 12.5%, but this year, Zillow expects that growth rate to slow to 5.9%. Of course, that's probably not too comforting to a population of renters that already lives in one of the most competitive, expensive markets in the country, especially since Zillow said people in San Francisco can expect to spend 40% of their income on rent in 2016.

West Coast rents are an extreme — Zillow data says the three most expensive cities for renters are all in California. At the same time, tenants throughout the U.S. can expect modest rent increases, with a projected annual growth rate of 1.1% in 2016, from a median monthly rent of $1,381 to $1,396. (Zillow forecasts its rental index figures using recent and historical rent trends.)

And in some bigger cities, rents are poised to drop. They're not necessarily the cheapest places to leave, but they're certainly not anywhere near the $3,699-per-month people can expect to pay in San Jose, Calif., this year. Out of the 35 largest metro areas in the country, nine cities will see rent price drops in 2016, Zillow predicts.

No matter where you're looking to rent, good credit can make the process of finding a new place a lot easier since landlords tend to look at a version of your credit report when screening tenants. Before you start looking, take some time to see where you stand. You can get a free credit report summary, updated monthly, on Credit.com. If buying a home is an option, that may be the more economical choice, as a monthly mortgage payment is sometimes less expensive than the median rent in some areas.

9. Detroit

December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,132
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,128
Change: -0.4%

8. Philadelphia

December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,558
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,550
Change: -0.5%

7. Cleveland

December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,124
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,117
Change: -0.6%

5. St. Louis (tie)

December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,123
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,115
Change: -0.7%

5. Baltimore (tie)

December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,714
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,702
Change: -0.7%

4. Pittsburgh
December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,090
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,079
Change: -1%

3. Chicago
December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,633
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,611
Change: -1.4%

2. Las Vegas
December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,212
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,191
Change: -1.8%

1. Indianapolis
December 2015 Median Monthly Rent: $1,181
Projected December 2016 Median Monthly Rent: $1,138
Change: -3.6%

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9 cities where it's getting cheaper to rent this year

Missoula, Montana

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Portland, Maine

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Fargo, North Dakota

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Saint Cloud, Minnesota

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Cincinnati, Ohio

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Eau Claire, Wisconsin

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Lawrence, Kansas

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Albany, New York

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Madison, Wisconsin

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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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Want to find out which cities will see the biggest drops in rental costs? Check out the full list here.

More from Credit.com
How Renting Can Impact Your Credit
How to Get a Credit Card With Average Credit
The Truth About Credit Repair

This article originally appeared on Credit.com.

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