The Shift of Boston Area Rent
Boston is an absolutely amazing city. New Englanders, original and new, love the four seasons, the accessibility, the things to do, the history, the nearby beaches, the schools and medical centers, the sports, and much more. The family-friendly hub and surrounding areas have something to offer everyone, including rapidly rising rent costs. In just over the last three to five years, rents have jumped to intimidating figures downtown and now in surrounding towns. From the more expensive areas such as Seaport, Beacon Hill, the South End and to places that used to be affordable such as Somerville, Southie, and Cambridge, people are finding it difficult to afford just about anything.
Although rent prices are exceptionally expensive, some may be surprised to hear that in 2017, Greater Boston is actually seeing rents drop for the first time in 7 years by a whopping 5.9 percent. The median price of a one-bed apartment is down 5.9 percent to $2,250 while a two-bed apartment is down 2.3 percent to $2,600 year over year. The surge of land and construction projects are rising in Greater Boston neighborhoods as demand increases and the population rises. In November, an apartment building opened on Malvern Street in Allston with 2-bedroom apartments starting at $2,500. Compared to the Seaport, which has prices twice as high, this is a good sign for rent prices.
With prices downtown starting to flat-line, they are still extremely high and have been pushing people a little further out from the center of the city for years. What this is doing is causing a rippling effect to other neighborhoods which now are in higher demand. As demand increases and supply is consumed, rent prices inflate and we are seeing that in areas that used to be a lot more affordable.
Tips for Renters
Although there was a small rent decrease downtown this year, it’s not a typical trend and it’s recommended that renters know what they’re getting themselves into before the lease is signed. Ask what the rent increase was the year prior and what the suspected rent increase will be next year so that the future budget can be assessed. An increase in rent is an annoying reason to have to move, especially with vacancies so low in the Greater Boston area.
Landlords raise rent for a number of reasons. Massachusetts property taxes increase, market value increases (meaning that people are willing to pay more for a decent space), and sometimes, rents are raised annually regardless of any other factor. Know before you owe.
Below, click through this interactive infographic on Boston-area rents from Jumpshell.
Who to Call
If you’re looking to find a place to rent, or if you have property for which you’d like to find a tenant, contact the Lamacchia Realty Rental Department. We make the rental process easy and streamlined, help take care of all the paperwork, and work hard to make sure that the rental and the renter are a perfect match.