Apartment hunting? Rents rise dramatically across DC

Rent is not known for being cheap in the District, and according to a recent report by Rent.com, rents spiked throughout the city over the past year.

Source data includes Rent.com listings, as well as those from Apartment Guide and Redfin. It’s broken down by number of bedrooms and neighborhoods within the city. The report also looks at other cities in the D.C. area.

The average cost of renting studio apartments has gone up by 23% since this time last year. The average price of a studio hovers around $1,924, according to the report.

Monthly price increases for one- and two-bedroom apartments are in the middle, with both up by 15%. A one-bedroom costs nearly $2,400 a month, while a two-bedroom apartment costs around $3,200 a month in D.C. Three bedroom apartments in the city are going for $3,075 on average.

Rent for three-bedroom apartments shows the smallest increase — a 10% spike since last year — unless you’re aiming for Capitol Hill. In that neighborhood, the average cost for a three-bedroom apartment jumped by 108% at $5,603, Rent.com found.

Rent has increased dramatically in 2022 compared to 2021 in some parts of D.C. and nearby communities. In Georgetown, the average monthly cost of a two-bedroom apartment skyrocketed 125%, to $4,500. In Dupont Circle, the average for a one-bedroom jumped 84% to $3,247.

While rent costs are up overall across the city, the report isn’t showing much price movement in other neighborhoods during the past year.

In Stanton Park, Adams Morgan, Petworth, Anacostia and Fort Dupont, prices are static for studios.

Rents for studios are also lower in some neighborhoods. Columbia Heights and Navy Yard are both down by 5% and 6% respectively. But that doesn’t mean they’re cheap. The average price for a studio apartment in Columbia Heights is $1,707. It’s $1,670 in Navy Yard.

D.C. is not alone in sky-high rents. Other neighborhoods are experiencing spikes of their own. However, the average cost of a studio in Columbia, Annapolis, Frederick and Germantown in Maryland; and in Sterling, Manassas, Fairfax and Arlington in Virginia is more than a studio on Capitol Hill.

For example, in Annapolis, studio apartments are 47% more expensive on average, at $2,294 while Gaithersburg’s average monthly cost for a two-bedroom bumped up 38% to $2,439.

Prices for a one-bedroom apartment on Capitol Hill rival those of Bethesda, Maryland, and Arlington, Virginia.

The average rents for two- and three-bedroom apartments are higher on Capitol Hill. Average rent prices for these types of apartments are less expensive outside the city, even as most rents outside of D.C. seem to be on the rise, as well.

However, there were some outliers: the average price of a one-bedroom dropped or stayed nearly the same year over year in Columbia, Maryland, and Ashburn and Sterling, Virginia.

Over the past year, the costs of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments have remained more stable than the average monthly cost for three-bedroom apartments.

D.C. rent trends. (Courtesy Rent.com)

The most affordable neighborhoods for one-bedrooms on average in D.C. include Benning Ridge ($1,000), Congress Heights ($1,025) and Bellevue ($1,069). The most expensive areas are West End ($3,540), Foggy Bottom ($3,508) and Dupont Circle ($3,222).

The most popular neighborhoods include Mount Vernon Square, The Wharf, Chinatown, NoMa and Logan Circle, where rent for a one-bedroom apartment ranges from about $2,000 to $2,600 a month.

Read the full report at Rent.com.

Michelle Basch

Michelle Basch is a reporter turned morning anchor at WTOP News.

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