Renters in Seattle already struggling with increases that are making the city unaffordable will need an income boost next year that is the biggest in the country to keep up with expected rent hikes.
A new analysis from real estate media company Zillow says Seattle metro-area renters will need to make $1,248 more to afford rent — and that figure will only leave them with the same amount of leftover cash that they are currently living on.
Seattle, in the midst of a tech boom luring thousands of workers to companies such as Amazon, Facebook, Google and more, is also gripped by a housing crunch and the pains associated with rapid growth.
The city outpaces Los Angeles ($1,152), Boston ($1,140), Sacramento, Calif. ($792), and Orlando, Fla. ($672), in markets where renters will need the biggest income boost. Nationally, the average raise would need to be just $168.
Zillow says the current median monthly rent for metro Seattle is $2,100. Over the next year, rents are expected to rise $104 per month to $2,204.
“For a long time now, renters have faced an affordability crisis when it comes to housing, and renters in some hot markets will still need significant raises just to keep up with rising rents,” Zillow chief economist Dr. Svenja Gudell said in a news release. “Incomes have a ways to go to bring rental affordability closer to historical levels, but recent gains are being met with slowing rent appreciation, a welcome sign for renters.”
Zillow points to its personalized calculator as a tool for renters to keep track of how much more they’ll need to make to keep up with rents.