Top 5 Worst Cities for Renters (And the Best Cities for Home Buyers)

Published on May 20th, 2016

We found the 5 most expensive cities to live in based on average monthly rent. But don’t worry, not all hope is lost! Nearby are hidden gems to buy a house! Don’t waste your money renting - make a smart investment.

Want to get a free estimate for how much you can afford? Use our multi-step rate quote calculator to determine your monthly expenses.

5. Ft. Lauderdale, FL

The beautiful beaches and scenery of Ft. Lauderdale command high monthly rents, with an average of $1,427. That’s a share of about 31% of a household’s income. Instead of throwing away money, make an investment in a house in Tampa Bay, FL. Tampa was voted one of the best metro areas to invest in real estate by Forbes. The city boasts a healthy 3.1% population growth rate and is a great place to sell to retirees moving in or vacationers.

4. Dallas, TX

The average rent of an apartment in Dallas is about $1,489. With an average salary of $59,000, rent covers a 30% share of a household’s income. Dallas was actually named the best place to invest in real estate by Houston and Austin hold spots on this top 10 list as well. Dallas offers strong price appreciation when you decide to resell. The city is great for first-time homebuyers. Nerd Wallet calculated the average homebuyer would spend about $1,272 a month on their mortgage, less than the city’s average rent and you’ll have more space and land.

3. Denver, CO

Denver’s median rent for a 1-bedroom apartment is $1,499. The city is struggling to keep up with the demand of high waves of new renters moving into the city. Denver’s rental market hasn’t been able to keep up because of lack of new construction. Many renters are moving out of the city and heading to the suburbs. Lakewood is an affordable option to buy a house with a median price of $238,500. Lakewood offers the perfect combination to outdoor activities with a chic downtown area. The city’s vibrant energy earned it the title of All-American City in 2011, an award for the community’s efforts to join together and accomplish specific goals.

2. Bay Area, CA

Renting in the Bay Area cities of California is outrageously expensive, even if you have a high salary. This includes the cities of San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland. According to Forbes, the median rent in 2015 for San Fran apartment was almost $3,000. Renter’s median income is about $97,573, which means they are paying 37% of their income on rent. If you’re looking to make the move to California, we recommend looking for a home in Irvine, where the economy is booming and the crime rate is low. Irvine is just south of Los Angeles and is home to more than 250,000 people and 21,000 businesses. The city offers promising growth, meaning your home investment may be well worth it if you decide to move again.

1. Manhattan, NY

It’s no surprise that this skyscraper-filled New York neighborhood trumps the list. Manhattan residents pay an average rent of $4,374. That’s about 67% of the area’s median income. Instead of throwing away your money in the big city, check out Trenton, New Jersey’s capital. With a 26-minute commute to the Big Apple, plenty of public transportation, and a large number of carpoolers going to work in the city is easy. Trenton is much more affordable with an average home price of $122,500. That’s 64% cheaper than the state’s average home price.

Think you’re ready to make the move to one of these cities? Use our multi-step calculator to get a free rate quote and estimate your monthly costs. When you’re ready to talk to one of our mortgage advisors, give us a call at 1-844-77-vLoan or hit us up on the live chat. Good luck house hunting!

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