Our rents would be cheaper if we had fewer single-family homes and more apartment buildings.
Our rents would be cheaper if we had fewer single-family homes and more apartment buildings. Getty

If you’ve been noticing rents creep back upwards in Seattle recently you might not be making things up. Seattle rents are back on the rise after dipping slightly down in December, showing an average increase of 0.4 percent in April and an overall 0.5 percent increase since April of last year, according to a new report from Apartment List.

April was the third month in a row that the average rent in Seattle has increased after a brief decline in December, according to the rental listing company’s report. Seattle’s median two bedroom rent stands at $1,660, more than Tacoma’s $1,570 average but less than Bellevue’s $2,360. That makes Seattle more expensive for rentals than Austin, Texas, and Phoenix but cheaper than cities like Los Angeles, Boston and New York. San Francisco’s average two-bedroom rent is a whopping $3,110, nearly twice as expensive as Seattle’s average.

Apartment List

Seattle’s rising rents are part of a regionwide trend that has seen double-digit increases in the median rents in cities like Bellevue, Everett, Kent, and Renton. Seattle’s rents are rising at 0.5 percent which is actually slower than the national median of 1.3 percent and Washington’s average of 1.4 percent. That’s considerably less than the increases seen in other cities like Denver’s 2 percent increase and Phoenix’s 3.7 percent increase.

Seattle’s median apartment price is surprisingly equal to some of its suburbs, according to Apartment List’s report. Everett’s median one-bedroom rent is $1,330, the same average for Seattle’s one bedroom. Kent and Renton were both well over Seattle’s median price for a one bedroom, with a median price of $1,460 and $1,660, respectively. Kenmore is the only suburb in this recent report that saw their median apartment price drop over the last year, falling 0.2 percent to land at $1,670 for a one bedroom and $2,080 for a two-bedroom.

Apartment List

If you live in Seattle and you're looking for cheap rent without leaving the state you might want to head to Washington’s second largest city. Spokane’s median rent for a two-bedroom apartment is just $900, which means you’d have $760 leftover every month to spend on beer and weed, which will help you cope with living in Spokane.