Seattle Rents: High, But Not Highest In Washington State

It’s not a news flash that the real estate scene in Seattle has exploded in recent years. The Emerald City has gone from a town most people outside the state only associated with coffee and flannel, to the tech capital of the US (save for our friends in Silicon Valley). As home to some of the biggest tech names in the world and a booming job market to match, it’s fair to say there’s might not be enough housing to meet demand. Or, at least to meet demand AND your budget.

High rises, apartment buildings and condos are going up all over the city, and soon, our beloved skyline will be dotted with more and more buildings and towers, making the Seattle of just 10 years-ago look almost unfamiliar.

Seattle has recently made headlines as one of the most expensive places to live, get this, in the world. That’s right, recent data has placed Seattle’s rent rates at 5th highest in the nation and, supposedly 9th highest in the world! However, San Francisco and New York still dwarf us, tying for number one most expensive, world-wide.

Those of us who are Seattle Natives know that the average rental rate in Seattle has increased fairly dramatically in the last few years, but it’s interesting to note that, while Seattle’s rents have been on the rise, they don’t quite top the list of highest rents in the state.

According to recent data from Apartment List, Seattle ranks at number 5 in the state for highest rents, with the average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment at about $1,650.

Surprisingly, Mercer Island tops the list of cities in Washington for highest rents. A one-bedroom on Mercer Island goes for an average of a whopping $1,890 per month. No one said Island living was cheap, I suppose.

Filling in the gaps between number 1 and number 5 on the list are Bellevue at number 2 with an average of $1,860 per month for a one-bedroom (not a whole lot lower than their neighboring Island), Redmond at number 3 with an average of about $1,690 monthly rent for a one bedroom and Kirkland at number 4 with an average monthly rent of $1,660 for a one-bedroom.

Seattle and the Eastside are not the only places in Washington with rising rent rates. Tacoma tops the list nation-wide for fastest growing rent with a year-over-year growth rate of 7.7 percent. Seattle comes close, but not close enough to that figure with year-over-year rental rate growth at 5.3 percent.

Staggering growth aside, Tacoma is still a bargain in the rental market compared to Seattle, with a one-bedroom in Tacoma going for an average of $1,000 per month. For those of you keeping score, that’s a savings of $650 compared to Seattle.

But, proving that some things really don’t change, the cheapest places to live in the Evergreen State are still East of the Cascade Mountains. You can get a one-bedroom for only $600 per month in Walla Walla and it’s not much pricier in the State’s second largest city, Spokane, at around $630 per month.

What a difference a mountain range makes…

How Does Seattle Stack Up in Priciest City for New Parents?

Any new parent can tell you that having children will cost you a pretty penny, but which cities will have new parents reaching deeper into their pockets? According to the Seattle Pi, the average cost for that first year for new parents is around $26,000 in the US after insurance, upgrading the house to make room,daycare and other expenses. Most parents factor in the cost of diaper runs, baby prepping the home and feedings etc, but some have trouble wrapping their head around the bigger expenses like expanding the home. seattle now

In Pi article, an agent reportedly reviewed the cost of adding an extra room, nine months of childcare, out of pocket cost for prenatal care, and first year of post delivery healthcare, as well as everyday items like diapers, strollers etc. when figuring out which US cities are the priciest for new parents. The stats are in, and the results might surprise you. The most expensive city for new parents was listed as San Jose, Calif. with a total cost for the first year reported to be $41,600. Out of the 20 cities listed, Chicago was the least expensive city for new parents, with a first year cost reported to be $25,500. Where does Seattle stack up among these cities? Seattle was listed as number 13 on the list, with an average first year cost reported to be $27,400 for new parents. To view a list of other US cities cost for new parents, visit the Seattle Pi today.