Rental Market Still Belongs to Renters


rental market
rental market

A headline-grabbing article last week suggests that after three years of flat growth, apartment rents are poised to spike and may jump 10 percent by 2012.

The piece, from CNN Money, bases its prediction of double-digit rent increases on pent-up demand from twentysomethings who were forced to move in with their parents during the recession. Now, it says, these ranks of the young and underemployed are desperate to leave the nest.

It's true that rents rose steadily -- if slowly -- for most of last year. But in the fourth quarter of 2010, from October through December, the average rent paid in U.S. cities actually fell $2 to $956 per month, according to apartment data tracker RealFacts.