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Which cities have the best deals for individual renters?

by SuperiorInvest

Congratulations: Valentine’s Day is over, you’re still single and doing well.

Maybe apart from the rent. Individual tenants pay a premium for couples and roommates who split the costs (even if roommates have separate bedrooms). In addition, a recent report from Moody’s Analytics showed that the typical American renter is rent encumbered (they pay 30 percent or more of their income for rent), so the situation is particularly harsh for singles right now.

A recent study by RentHop looked at America’s 50 largest cities to see where renting a studio — the cheapest way for people to live alone — is the most affordable and the least expensive. Using U.S. Census income data and advertised studio apartment rents listed from Jan. 1 to Nov. 18, 2022, researchers determined the percentage of an individual’s income needed to afford a median-priced studio in each city. This week’s chart shows the 10 most expensive and 10 cheapest cities.

New York City was found to be the hardest city to afford, with median studio rent coming in at $3,016, or about 44 percent of the median local income for an individual. Miami was next with studio rent of $2,070, 37 percent of the median income for an individual.

The best case scenario was found in Albuquerque, where the median rent for a studio was just $700, equal to about 15 percent of the income of local singles. Wichita, Kan., was next, at 16 percent — though its median studio rent of $575 was 19 percent higher than in 2021.

The increases were harder to handle in already expensive areas like New York, where studio rents climbed about 23 percent year over year, from $2,450 to $3,016. But even in Columbus, Ohio, the fifth-cheapest city, studio rent rose nearly 35 percent, from $625 to $849. Landlords in only two of America’s 50 largest cities—Fresno, Calif., and Fort Worth—saw average student rents decline.

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