Renting Statistics for 2023

As housing prices rise, more Americans are turning to renting as a more accessible option. Data from various housing resources help paint a picture of the evolution of renting in America.

Melissa Veseli

Data Scientist

Blerina Miftari

Sr. Content Editor

Last Updated: 14.02.2023

Homeowner vs Renting

Key Takeaways: February 2023 Data

Renting Rate & Statistics 2023

Section 01

Renting Statistics in General

Section 02

Renting Statistics by State

Section 03

Renting Demographic Statistics

Section 04

Average Renting Cost

Section 05

Renters Insurance Statistics

Section 06

How Big is the Rental Market in the U.S.?
Section 01

Renting Statistics in General

If you're interested in finding out about the number of renters and the average rental costs, you can read the section below to learn about renting statistics in the U.S.

Homeownership has decreased, and currently 36% of American households rent their homes instead of owning them.

The number of households that rent their homes is 44.1 million.

Rent payments in the United States have risen by 61% over the last 50 years.

Statista reports that almost 44 million housing units, which make up 34% of the total U.S. households, were rented.

Based on U.S. Census data, the average household size is 2.6 individuals. Therefore, the number of renters in 2021 was 114.4 million, which accounts for 35% of the U.S. population.

The Zillow Observed Rent Index experienced another substantial decline of 0.3% from November to December, which was a significant drop following the largest one-month decrease in its seven-year history.

This decline follows a 0.4% drop in November, and the typical asking rents at the national level are currently $1,981.

This is still 7.4% higher than the same time last year.

Rent growth has been slowing down since it reached a peak of 17.1% year-over-year growth in February. The demand for housing among Americans has decreased this year after a surge in 2021, largely due to the increased costs of rent and high inflation.

In January, rental prices decreased in 67 out of the 100 largest cities in the nation. Newark, NJ experienced the most substantial decline, with prices dropping by 2.3% on a monthly basis.

Year-over-year rent growth slowed to 4.77% in December, the lowest since July 2021, representing the fourth consecutive month of single-digit increases, beating the previous low from November by over 2.5 points.

After a slight increase in November, month-over-month rent prices fell by 1.41% in December, the steepest decline since the slide began, pushing the median apartment price back below $2,000 to $1,978, the lowest since April 2022.

In October 2020, the median asking rate for empty rental units in the United States was $1,160.

3.9% of those in the top 25% net worth percentile are renters.

Over the course of 10 years, rental rates increased by 31%.

Approximately 41% of renters allocate more than 35% of their income towards rent.

The average household that rents has 2.35 residents.

The average size of a renting household decreased by 5.2% in 2020.

The number of people living in rental housing is 100.9 million, which represents a 7.4% decrease year-over-year.

Approximately 5.5% of renters have resided in their home for more than 20 years.

Section 02

Renting Statistics by State

The median monthly rent in 2022 increased by 2% month-over-month and 15% year-over-year to reach $2,002 nationally. To find the average cost of rent by state, please continue reading.

From 2021 to 2022, renters in most U.S. states have encountered rent hikes of at least 10%.

Between 2021-2022, Arizona, Tennessee, New York, Nevada, and Utah had statewide rent hikes of 20% or more for renters.

While the rates in Alabama are elevated, they are decreasing as homeownership has dropped by 5.0% since 2005. Presently, the homeownership rate in Alabama is 0.6% higher than the average rate over the past 15 years.

Rent hikes below 10% in 2021-2022 were only seen in Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, and South Dakota.

The most expensive states for renters are New York, California, and Massachusetts, with median rents of $3,400, $3,000, and $2,900, respectively, occupying the top three spots.

Alabama's homeownership rate of 72.5% surpasses the national average by 10.5%.

On average, rents in Florida surged by 28%.

In December, the most substantial monthly drops in rent were recorded in Seattle (-1.0%), Las Vegas (-0.9%), Dallas (-0.8%), San Jose (-0.8%), and Washington, D.C. (-0.8%).

The inclusion of Dallas and D.C. in the bottom-five list indicates that the rental market's vulnerability is not limited to the western region.

Sacramento (2.7%), Providence (0.6%), Cleveland (0.5%), Pittsburgh (0.2%), and Charlotte (0.1%) experienced the highest monthly rent increases.

Apart from Sacramento's expansion (which appears to be a statistical mean-reversion due to the low annual growth rate of 4.0%), these markets demonstrate relatively consistent rental demand in some of the more reasonably priced areas of the American heartland.

Compared to the previous year, rents have decreased by 0.9% in Las Vegas and risen only slightly in Phoenix (1.7%), New Orleans (2.2%), Baltimore (3.1%), and Austin (3.9%).

This group exemplifies the two ways to land at the bottom of the rent growth rankings: a reversal of the pandemic-induced surge in rental demand (Vegas, Phoenix, and Austin) or a consistent inadequacy in housing demand (New Orleans and Baltimore).

Miami (11.7%), Louisville (10.4%), Cincinnati (10.2%), Providence (9.7%), and New York (9.6%) had the highest annual rent growth.

San Jose, with a median monthly rent of $3,216, is the priciest major market, trailed by San Francisco ($3,100), New York ($3,062), San Diego ($2,991), and Los Angeles ($2,917) - retaining the same cities and the same order as last month.

California's homeownership rate is 54.5%, 16.9% lower than the national average and decreasing. Since 2005, homeownership in California has declined by 9.3%. Presently, California's homeownership is 2.5% lower than the average rate for the last 15 years.

Section 03

Renting Demographic Statistics

Approximately 50% of U.S. renters are White, with Black and Hispanic groups following at a 20% share each. Renting is more common for Black and Hispanic individuals, whereas Asian individuals do not exhibit a significant preference for renting or owning. For further details on renter demographics,  refer to the following section.

On average, a U.S. renter is 39 years old, unmarried, has completed at least 4 years of college education, and earns a median annual income of $42,500 (compared to the national median annual income of $67,500).

Roughly 33% of renters have children under the age of 18 residing in their household, while more than 80% own pets.

The ownership rate for individuals aged 35-54 is only 1% higher than the rental rate, with 34.5% being homeowners and 35.5% being renters.

Around 38.1% of renters reside alone, whereas the majority of homeowners (59.5%) are married couples.

White renters constitute 64.06% of all renters.

Caucasian/Non-Hispanic individuals account for 51.79% of all renters.

Hispanic or Latino individuals comprise 19.65% of all renters.

Black or African American individuals make up 20.25% of all renters.

Among renters, individuals belonging to the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander racial demographic are the least represented at 0.23%.

Around 28.3% of renters hold a bachelor's degree or higher.

Approximately 13.6% of renters did not complete high school.

A total of 13.32% of millennial renters report that they plan to rent permanently as they believe that they will never have the financial means to purchase a home.

In the next five years, an estimated 13% of millennial renters nationwide will have the financial capacity to make a conventional 20% down payment.

The median age of U.S. renters is 39, with more than half of all renters under the age of 45, and 34% aged 35 or younger.

Merely 8% of renters are in their seventies, and only 9% are in their sixties, leading to a further concentration of younger individuals in the renters' age distribution.

Millennials (27-41 years old) comprise the largest group of U.S. renters, accounting for 42% of all renters, while Baby Boomers (57-76 years old) are the largest generation of U.S. homeowners, also representing 42% of all homeowners.

Section 04

Average Renting Cost

The rate of rent-price increases is gradually slowing down. In the past month, the national index for one-bedroom rentals decreased by 0.3% to $1,492, while the national index for two-bedroom rentals remained unchanged at $1,822.

Between January 2021 and June 2022, the typical monthly expense for a one-bedroom apartment rose from $941 to $1,169, and for a two-bedroom apartment, it went up from $1,093 to $1,339.

Prices are even steeper for those seeking to relocate, with the average asking rent now at $1,900. Single-family homes have an average monthly cost of $2,018, whereas the typical apartment rents for $1,659.

Rent prices in the majority of states have gone up by at least 10%.

In the period between 2021 and 2022, Florida recorded the highest surge in average rental costs, with a 28% increase that tops the nation.

In five additional states, namely Arizona, Tennessee, New York, Nevada, and Utah, there was a statewide rise of 20% or more in rental costs.

Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, and North Dakota were the only states where rent hikes stayed below 10% from 2021 to 2022. Concerning empty rental units, just two states have median asking rents below $1,000 per month, whereas 13 states have a median asking rent exceeding $2,000 per month.

The highest average rent in the United States is in Hawaii, where it stands at $2,399 per month. Vacant units in Hawaii have even higher asking rents, with new renters being asked to pay an average of $2,850 per month.

California has the second-highest rental costs in the nation, with the average tenant paying $1,844 per month. Across the state, the median asking price for an unoccupied unit is $3,000 per month.

San Jose leads the pack with an average asking rent of $3,199 a month for vacant units.

The average renter in the area pays $2,432 a month, a sixteen percent increase year over year.

San Francisco rents average $2,111 a month, while the asking price on vacant units is $3,157 a month for new tenants.

San Diego saw the sharpest increase in average rent costs in the state, with prices 20% higher than in 2021.

With an average monthly rent of just $826, North Dakota has the lowest rental rates in the nation, a 3% upturn from the previous year. The typical rent for an available unit is $831 per month, while in Fargo, the state's biggest city, rents are somewhat higher at $878.

Iowa boasts the country's second most affordable rental market, with average rents of $905 per month, a 7% rise from the previous year's rate of $846. Iowa City, the state's biggest metro area, has a median asking price of $1,120 per month.

The average rental cost in Arkansas is $917 per month, the third-lowest in the nation. The median asking rent for unoccupied units is $1,026 per month.

Lake Charles, Louisiana, is the only major metropolitan area to display a decline in the average rent from 2021 to 2022, with prices dropping by 13%. Significantly, the area is still recovering from Hurricane Laura, which caused devastation and damaged 50% of the homes.

Section 05

Renters' Insurance Statistics

Discover the latest information on renters insurance in the United States for 2023, including essential facts, current statistics, and figures.

About 61 million people, which accounts for 55% of renters in the U.S., have active renter's insurance policies.

It is possible that within the next year, the number of people with renter's insurance policies could increase to over 65 million.

Roughly 75% of renters who have renter's insurance are mandated by their landlords to acquire this type of coverage.

On average, renters paid $211 per year or approximately $18 per month for their renter's insurance premium.

The most commonly chosen deductible amount was $500.

In contrast to 43% of insured homeowners, only 18% of insured renters observed an uptick in their premiums in the past year.

The majority of renters are maintaining their current renter's insurance status quo. Merely 14% of renters with insurance intend to modify their existing policies.

Regarding individuals without renter's insurance, 16% disclosed their intention to buy a policy within the next year.

All age groups and genders of renters displayed an interest in safeguarding their assets through renter's insurance, albeit a slightly higher proportion of female renters possessed coverage than their male counterparts.

Although more than 50% of renters in every age group had renter's insurance, those in their 20s were the most inclined among all to hold coverage.

Section 06

How Big is the Rental Market in the U.S.?

Keep reading to learn everything about the rental market in the U.S.

In 2023, the Apartment Rental industry's revenue amounts to $226.4 billion in market size.

The Apartment Rental industry in the US experienced a faster increase in market size compared to the Real Estate and Rental and Leasing sector as a whole.

A decline of -1.2% is anticipated in the market size of the Apartment Rental industry for 2023.

In the US, the Apartment Rental industry holds the second position in the Real Estate and Rental and Leasing sector in terms of market size and is ranked as the 63rd largest industry overall.

The market size of the Apartment Rental industry in the US has, on average, grown by 0.6% annually between 2018 and 2023.

The key challenge faced by this industry is intense competition.

A significant advantage for this industry is the low volatility in its revenue.

The growth rate of the Apartment Rental industry's market size in the US has been slower than that of the overall economy.