Renters beware: Rental prices are cooling, but not everywhere

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Let down gently

Rents in the US fell 0.4% last month, marking the first year-over-year drop since the beginning of the pandemic, per new data from Redfin. The decline leaves the national median at $1,937 a month, the lowest level in 13 months.

Asking rents fell the most in Austin (11%), followed by Chicago (9%), and New Orleans (3%). However, despite the overall nationwide decline, many of the largest metropolitan areas saw prices rise, with Raleigh (17%) increasing the most year-on-year, and Cleveland (15%), Charlotte (13%), Indianapolis (11%) and Nashville (10%) also seeing large rises.

Redfin attributes the cooling in rental prices to a wave of new supply from builders who rushed to meet the pandemic housing demand, whose projects are now starting to complete. In February, finished residential projects in buildings with 5+ units rose by 72% year-over-year to 509,000. That's the second-highest number recorded since 1987.Despite the small drop, the median asking rent remains more than $300, or roughly 20%, higher than it was three years ago.

Go deeper: Check out the full dataset from Redfin.

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