Want more space than your 1-bedroom DC apartment? That won’t be cheap

apartment in Denver
In D.C., the jump to a two-bedroom apartment will cost you about 33.3% more. In Denver, the difference is 31.9%, (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Many apartment renters who were happy with their cozy one-bedroom apartments may feel differently in the new pandemic work-from-home lifestyle, but the difference in average cost between a one-bedroom and a comparable two-bedroom varies significantly by city.

For D.C.-area renters, the upgrade would mean an average of 33.3% more in monthly rent, according to MagnifyMoney.

That ranks the D.C. metro No. 9 among the top 100 metros for the biggest cost differences between one- and two-bedroom apartments.

The current average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the Washington, D.C. area is $2,160 a month. An upgrade to an average two-bedroom apartment bumps that average monthly rent payment up to $2,880, or a difference of $720 a month.

In dollar amounts, the cost of moving up in the San Francisco metro tops the list, with an average difference of $1,010 a month. The average rent for a two-bedroom apartment in San Francisco is $4,210, though the percentage change, at 31.6%, is lower than in D.C.

On a percentage basis, the biggest move up jump is in St. Louis, where the average one-bedroom apartment rents for $910 a month and the average two-bedroom apartment is $1,280 a month, or a 40.7% increase in the monthly rent payment.

Memphis is at the bottom of the move-up cost list, with just a 6% difference between the average one-bedroom rent of $830 a month and the average two-bedroom at $880 a month.

MagnifyMoney notes average one-bedroom rents nationwide in July were down from a year ago in 35 of the 100 largest metros, and average two-bedroom rents were down year-over-year in 25 metros.

Average one-bedroom rents in the D.C. are down 2.7% from a year ago, although the average two-bedroom rents in the Washington region are up 4% from a year ago.

Here’s the difference in one-bedroom rents and two-bedroom rents, on average, in the 100 largest metros, courtesy of MagnifyMoney:

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