Some Tampa Bay rent prices slowly dropping after months of constant climb

Local News

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The January 2022 rent report from ApartmentList is in and it shows that month-to-month, Tampa Bay’s rent prices are starting to drop.

Following months of continuous increased rent prices through October, Tampa Bay rent prices are going down, according to ApartmentList. It’s the second month in a row that prices have declined, though year-to-year, the cost of a one or two-bedroom apartment is still the head of the pack in Florida.

ApartmentList reports that in the City of Tampa rents declined 1.5% heading into January, but are 32.4% higher than the year before. Median rents in Tampa are coming in at $1,448 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,766 for a two-bedroom. The state average yearly rent growth is 28.9%, putting Tampa ahead.

St. Petersburg isn’t doing much better on the rent increases, prompting the city council to weigh imposing an emergency rent freeze in the near future. A one-bedroom apartment in St. Pete is currently averaging $1,355 per month, according to ApartmentList’s data. A two-bedroom apartment is costing renters an average of $1,800 each month.

Compared to the year before, St. Pete rents are up 29.6%, higher than the state average. Month-to-month, prices decreased 0.9%. The housing crisis facing renters has prompted St. Petersburg’s City Council to explore rent control in the city.

Clearwater, another city in Pinellas County, has even higher rent increases compared to the year before. Clearwater’s rent is up 31.6% according to ApartmentList data, higher than Florida’s yearly growth and approaching Tampa-level price hikes. On the monthly side, Clearwater rent didn’t grow or shrink month to month. If you’re trying to live in Clearwater, average one-bedroom apartments cost $1,338 and a two-bedroom comes in at $1,827.

Nationally, a two-bedroom apartment is averaging a monthly rent cost of $1,294. In both Tampa and St. Pete, costs are much higher. The nationwide rent increase is averaged at 17% across the U.S.

Across Tampa Bay, Sarasota has it even worse, with prices up 47.9% compared to the year before. ApartmentList said Sarasota’s rent prices have gone up every month for 16 months straight. The average cost of a one-bedroom apartment is $1,545 and $2,117 for a two-bedroom. In the last month, Sarasota rents went up 1.7%.

Bradenton is only doing a little better than Sarasota. Rents increased 45% compared to the year before in the Bradenton market. In the past month, prices went up 0.7%, making a one-bedroom apartment $1,644 per month, and a two-bedroom $1,896, according to ApartmentList data.

Meanwhile in Lakeland, ApartmentList analysis shows rent growth is lower than the state average by a full five points.

The rent has gone up 23.9% in the past 12 months, and a one-bedroom apartment’s average rental cost is $1,161. Rent declined 0.6% on average in the past month, a two-bedroom apartment can rent for $1,475.

Heading in to 2022, it remains to be seen if Florida’s rent prices will head in a more stable direction, or if increases will remain the norm.

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