What is the Average Rent for a New Yorker?

November 20,2014 | By Aaron

 Everyone knows that New York City is the most expensive place to live in the country, driven largely by constantly rising real estate prices. But what about renting?

The latest numbers

Being a renter in New York is not for the faint of wallet. Huff Post reports that average rents in the city exceed $3,000, while that number is more like $1,000 nationwide. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment without a doorman is about $2,500 monthly, the New York Times notes.

RentJungle.com lists rent for the average apartment within 10 miles of city at $3,288, with one-bedrooms going for $2,933 and two-bedrooms averaging $3,670.

Zillow currently lists more than 6,200 apartments for rent in New York, including one-bath studios in Brooklyn going for a little more than $2,600 monthly and a one-bedroom, one-bath unit in Manhattan renting for more than $4,300.

Not the nation’s most expensive

Despite the common wisdom, New York is not the nation’s priciest place to rent a small apartment. Business Insider reports that in September, San Francisco passed New York City for the first time ever as having the costliest median rents for small apartments. San Francisco has median rents of $3,100 and $4,050 for one- and two-bedroom apartments, while the median in New York City is $2,995 and $3,495, respectively.

Also vying for the highest-rent champion is a surprising contender: Williston, North Dakota. Apartment Guide reported in February that the small town of 30,000, having experienced a recent oil boom, has a shortage of rentals as workers flock to the area.

But even if New York doesn’t currently hold the top spot, most New Yorkers feel that rents are certainly high enough.

Why so pricey?

The Office of the New York City Comptroller explains in an April 2014 housing report that average rents are increasing along with the number of higher-income households. More affluent families moving in create competition for higher-end housing. In addition, new housing development usually is higher quality than the existing development, which also raises prices. More and higher-end retail and service establishments also raise the value to residents, causing rents to increase.

While you may not get excess space in New York for your hard-earned dollars, that’s only part of what you’re paying for. Living in New York City is an experience unlike anything else, as New Yorkers know well.