The US rental market experienced a busy 2023, with many metros seeing intense competition for lease properties. Miami was the nation’s hottest market, with four other Florida metros making the top 30. In regional terms, the Midwest was the most competitive.
Miami is the most competitive US rental market
RentCafé has just released its research for rentals in the US last year and reveals that Miami took the crown as the nation’s hottest market. The metro saw almost 100% occupancy rates and strong lease renewals.
Miami continues to attract new residents, drawn to the metro’s “thriving tech scene”. As a result, RentCafé reports that supply levels cannot keep up with demand despite a “healthy” 3.7% increase in new apartments.
Competition for rental properties in Miami was so high last year that there were 22 applicants for every available property. This figure is over double the average for the US. In addition, new apartments stayed on the market for an average of just one month.
Other popular Florida metros
The Sunshine State attracts almost 1,000 new residents daily, drawn to the state’s year-round pleasant climate, job opportunities and lack of income tax. As a result, several Florida metros rank among the most competitive US rental markets.
In 2023, Broward County took 7th place, with Orlando just slightly behind in the 11th. Southwest Florida, home to Tampa and Charlotte County among others, stood in 18th position, while Tampa itself was in 25th place.
All the Florida locations had occupancy rates of over 94% last year, in keeping with Miami’s 96.9%.
The Midwest is the most competitive region
In regional terms, the Midwest had the most metros in the list, with three in the top five. RentCafé cites the region’s lower cost of living and vast outdoor spaces as the main reasons for its appeal.
Grand Rapids, Milwaukee and suburban Chicago all feature in the top five hottest markets. All had occupancy rates of over 95% last year and lease renewal rates of between 65 and 70%.
Prospects for the US rental market in 2024
RentCafé highlights the number of new apartments that have entered the market over the last few years. This “flood” has reportedly shaken the market, and, as a result, many metros have seen vacancy rates rise and renewal rates fall.
Consequently, the national Rental Competitivity Index stood at 59.5 at the end of 2023. However, the metros in the top 30 all ranked d at above 67 points. In the case of Miami, the Index stands at 122, while scores for Orlando and Southwest Florida sit at 96 and 82, respectively.
As ever, the hottest rental markets are those with prime job opportunities and an imbalance of supply and demand. Orlando and Tampa are just two examples.