In a year plagued with political turmoil and natural disasters, rent prices weren’t spared from turbulence. A recent rent report by apartment listing service Abodo found that, despite a few months of stability, even decreases early on, national rents took a sharp turn upward by the year’s end.
In 2017, one-bedroom rents around the country rose an average of 0.2 percent a month, for a total increase of 2.4 percent by December. Rents for two-bedroom apartments rose even more quickly, up 3 percent throughout the year. In both cases, the bulk of the rent hikes came in the final three months of the year.
In Fort Worth, however, the prices largely followed the seasons, with decreases in cooler months and increases with the heat of summer. One-bedrooms in Fort Worth dropped from $840 in January to $796 by April. But those consistent drops were followed by a summer boom: In June, rent jumped 4.4 percent, followed by a 5.4 percent increase in July, and another 2.9 percent increase in August, before cooling off for the rest of the year — just as the market nationwide was heating up. Nearby Dallas followed the same arc of early year decreases and a hot summer market, but a month earlier.
Fort Worth’s mixed bag of rises and falls averages to a monthly increase of 0.6 percent. By December, the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Fort Worth was $903, just over $60 more than January’s rent. Compared with the rest of the state, Fort Worth’s market is fairly mild. The city’s rent hikes outpaced only three other Texas cities: Apartments in Arlington increased by an average of 0.5 percent a month, those in Irving by 0.4 percent, and Austin by 0.3 percent.
Dallas is a different story. One-bedroom rents were $1,190, the highest in Texas. The lowest rents in Texas — and the fifth lowest in the country — were for Lubbock apartments, where a one-bedroom was a monthly average of $580. And that low rent is trending further down, at an average pace of 1.4 percent per month.
All told, Texas rents increased at an average of 0.5 percent per month, making it one of 28 states nationwide to feel an increase in 2017.
Heading into the new year, 2018 is already shaping up differently than the start of 2017. Although early last year held good news for Fort Worth renters, January 2018 came with 3.1 percent higher rents for one-bedrooms.
For more on where rents are rising and falling the fastest, visit Abodo’s 2017 Annual Rent Report.