Making It in the Bay

Bay Area Apartment Rents Continue to Plunge Since Start of Pandemic: Report

San Francisco's median price is down nearly 25% since March, biggest drop in the U.S.

NBC Universal, Inc.

Apartment rents continued to plummet in the Bay Area's biggest cities, with San Francisco seeing a nearly 25% plunge since the coronavirus pandemic began in March, according to a report from researcher Apartment List.

As first reported by SFGate, citing the research, median rent for a two-bedroom apartment in San Francisco stood at $2,377 in November, down 3.4% month over month and 24.5% since March when the median rent was $3,147.

For a one-bedroom in San Francisco, the median rent was down to $2,054, the report shows.

In San Jose, the median rent for a two-bedroom apartment fell about 2.4% month over month to $2,064. That represents a 14% drop since March, according to the report.

The number of vacant apartments in San Francisco has more than doubled in the last year, as many tenants have deserted the city during the pandemic – leading to a drop in rent prices.

Median rent for a one-bedroom in San Jose was down to $1,738.

In Oakland, median rent for a two-bedroom apartment declined 3.3% month over month to $1,968. Since March, rent has dropped 13.4% in the East Bay's biggest city.

A one-bedroom in Oakland was down to $1,664, the report shows.

San Francisco's plunge was by far the biggest in the U.S., with Seattle (down 19.1%), Boston (down 18.2%) and New York (down 18%) trailing and San Jose rounding out the top five nationally, the report shows.

While big cities were showing the largest declines, some suburban cities across the U.S. have become more expensive, according to Apartment List. Median rents were up 8% to 9.5% in places such as Citrus Heights, California; Boise, Idaho; Chesapeake, Virginia; and Fayetteville, North Carolina.

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