Florida rental markets have always ranked among the busiest in the US. As the nation’s top relocation and retirement spot, the Sunshine State has consistent demand for rental properties. But where does Florida stand within the US as a whole? And which Florida rental markets have seen the sharpest rate hikes in the last year?
The latest Waller, Weeks and Johnson Rental Index, published in June, set out to answer these questions. It revealed that 5 rental markets in Florida rank in the top 20 in the country and that 10 markets within the Sunshine State stand in the top 44.
Top Florida rental markets
Taking 107 metros areas in the US as its base, the Index shows which are the most expensive and cheapest in the country. 10 of the most popular Florida metros feature in the top 45 most expensive.
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach ranks as the highest Florida metro in the table. It stands in 7th position in the country with an average monthly rental rate of US$2,846.
Slightly further down the rankings and in 13th and 14th place respectively are North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton and Port St Lucie. In both these metro areas, rents cost at least US$2,266 a month.
Other Florida rental hotspots such as Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville also appear in the Index. Tampa takes 20th place with monthly rents averaging US$2,055, while Orlando is one position lower at US$1,999. Jacksonville rental properties are considerably cheaper and cost an average of US$1,748 a month, 44th in the national rankings.
Top US rental markets
Perhaps unexpectedly given its high-tech employment opportunities, California takes the lion’s share of the most expensive rental markets in the US. San José has the nation’s priciest rents at an average of US$3,199 with San Francisco hots on its heels. In this city, monthly rents come in at US$3,157.
Outside California, New York and Boston make an appearance in 4th and 8th positions, respectively. As mentioned above, Miami sits in 7th place, just ahead of Boston, Honolulu and Riverside.
Biggest rent rises in Florida
The Index also looks at annual increases in rents across the country. The same 10 most popular Florida rental markets all feature in the 15 highest hikes in the country and all have registered an increase of over 20% in the year.
Fort Myers experienced the biggest uptick in the country with monthly rates rising by 32.38%. Miami and Sarasota were not far behind and registered increases of 31.7% and 30.88%, respectively.
Tampa ranked fifth in the country for its rental hikes and saw rates go up by 26.93%. Tenants in Orlando also experienced a big increase in their rents, up 23.7% in 12 months. Jacksonville had the nation’s 15th highest rise at 20.39%.
Florida mirrors national tendency
Popular metros in the Sunshine State reflect the national trend for rent rises. In May, statistics from Realtor.com revealed that monthly rent had risen by over 20% across the country. Analysts have, however, pointed out that the underlying trend appears to show a downturn in the curve, providing some relief to tenants.
For buy-to-let investors, the latest research emphasizes the potential behind rental properties. Strong demand continues across the US and this situation is expected to continue. Supply on the housing market remains unable to keep up with demand and recent upticks in mortgage interest rates have dissuaded many would-be buyers. As a result, buy-to-let properties in the US continue to have a ready market.
(Source: Waller, Weeks and Johnson Rental Index)