Rent Report

Seattle Rents Fell Third Fastest in the Country Last Month

And more takeaways from October's rental market data.

By Seattle Met Staff November 3, 2022

After Seattle-area rents went up for seven straight months, apartment dwellers finally saw relief in September. October saw even more good news for the priced out and rent weary: According to the latest data from Apartment List, Seattle experienced the third highest decline in month-over-month rent growth.

That may seem like great news on the affordability front, but rents in October were still up 0.7 percent from the same month in 2021. And when compared to March 2020, when the national housing market went on a pandemic-triggered roller coaster, Seattle rents are still up 14 percent. 

As for rents in the suburbs, depending on where you're looking, rents either took a cue from Seattle or experienced modest growth. So what will a one- or two-bedroom cost you now? Time for the list drop.

8. Seattle

For the first time in forever there's a median two-bedroom rent below the $2,000 mark. While Seattle's month-over-month decline was hefty, it still wasn't enough to make that year-over-year growth dip. 
Median one-bedroom rent: $1,650
Median two-bedroom rent: $1,990
Month-over-month rent growth: -2.6 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 0.7 percent

Renton counts Topgolf and views of Lake Washington among its suburban allures. Perhaps another reason it's still in the positive growth column.

7. Renton

Just how much more traction have the suburbs had over Seattle's city core? Take a look at Renton. Once considered an affordable alternative, it now has median rents priced higher than Seattle proper.
Median one-bedroom rent: $1,720
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,180
Month-over-month rent growth: -0.8 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 10 percent

6. Mountlake Terrace

October wasn't all about declines. Some areas, like Mountlake Terrace, saw modest month-over-month growth—and sizable year-over-year increases.
Median one-bedroom rent: $1,810
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,110
Month-over-month rent growth: 0.4 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 11 percent

Lake Ballinger offers a spot of serenity from those up-and-down prices in Mountlake Terrace.

5. Bothell

Less affordable suburbs like Bothell also took a hit in October, with a decent decline between October and September. But as is the case with almost all other cities on this list, the year-over-year growth is still on the rise.
Median one-bedroom rent: $1,890
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,200
Month-over-month rent growth: -1.5 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 6.2 percent

4. Bellevue

Thought Seattle's sharp decline was something? Bellevue managed to edge the Emerald City out with a -2.7 percent month-over-month drop. Big picture reality check, though: The median one-bedroom rent is more than Seattle's median two-bedroom price.
Median one-bedroom rent: $2,070
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,310
Month-over-month rent growth: -2.7 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 4.4 percent

The Village at Totem Lake in Kirkland has amenities galore.

3. Kirkland

Formerly blazing Eastside suburb Kirkland also weathered a rent decline in October but managed to hold onto the third spot on this list. How things shake out as the housing market heads into a traditionally slower winter season is yet to be seen.
Median one-bedroom rent: $2,090
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,280
Month-over-month rent growth: -2.5 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 5.1 percent

2. Redmond

With a massive month-over-month decline, Redmond saw the sharpest rent drop of the entire Seattle area, landing it in a tie with Kirkland for that median one-bedroom rent. Its year-over-year growth, however, shows that this Eastside burb can't be counted out just yet.
Median one-bedroom rent: $2,090
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,360
Month-over-month rent growth: -3.4 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 7.2 percent

1. Issaquah

Even a sizable month-over-month rent decline, the same as Seattle's, couldn't knock Issaquah off the top spot. Its median two-bedroom rent has finally dipped below $2,500, but until that year-over-year growth stabilizes, chances are this area is going to remain the most expensive place to rent an apartment in the region.
Median one-bedroom rent: N/A
Median two-bedroom rent: $2,460
Month-over-month rent growth: -2.6 percent
Year-over-year rent growth: 7.1 percent

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