Baltimore Rents Getting a Little Less Affordable

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Want to feel good about paying rent in Baltimore? Stop for a moment and think about how average rents in San Francisco rose 17 percent over the past 12 months, while in Baltimore they rose just 6.2 percent. Want to feel bad about paying rent in Baltimore? Over the same period, rent in the DC area barely increased at all–just a measly 0.4 percent rise.

Looking at real estate trends makes it clear that Baltimore real estate is on the up-and-up; while median rent for a two-bedroom apartment is $1,550, well below many other major cities (including New York, LA, Boston, Chicago, and DC), rents are rising here more quickly than in any other market along the east coast, except for Atlanta.

And when you factor in average wages, Baltimore starts to look even more expensive. The median rent for a two-bedroom would eat up about 36 percent of an average local wage-earner’s paycheck–and, as everyone knows, you’re not supposed to spend more than a quarter of your income on housing.

Now, these stats–all of which come from Trulia’s Rent Monitor report–are always a little skewed in Baltimore, where the gap between the rich and poor is quite large. But the indicators are clear: rent is on the rise. Plan accordingly.

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