Though the median rental rate dropped nearly 3 percent in February, Chicago still maintained the number nine spot on Zumper’s National Rent report, which highlights the fluctuations in rental rates of the United States’ largest 50 cities.
In 2015, the average apartment rent increased 4.6 percent, which was faster than anytime since 2007, according to a report by real estate research company Reis Inc.
While rent forecasts are predicting a national slowdown in 2016 (Zillow’s Rent Forecast is calling for a rental rate bump of 1.1%), some Chicago neighborhoods experienced rent increases of quadruple that amount in a single month.
At the end of 2015, the average national apartment rent stood at approximately $1,180, which was an increase of $55 from January 2015. Nearly half of the 30 Chicago neighborhoods analyzed by Zumper stood above the $1,180 mark in February 2016.
High rent is becoming one of the biggest motivations for renters to purchase a home, second only to major life events like marriage or the birth of a child. In the first quarter of 2016, a Redfin survey found that one in four homebuyers is looking to purchase because of their increasing rent. This amount is up from one in five homebuyers in November 2015.
Currently, mortgage rates have dipped to lows not seen in over 12 months and several loan options are available that make homeownership, down payments, closing costs and mortgage insurance more affordable and accessible than ever.
If you’re interested in getting out of the rental circuit, download our free Mortgage 101 Handbook for everything you need to know about buying and financing your first home.