Looking for a place to rent in Boston? Now may be one of the more ideal times to lease a property as rents have plummeted in certain Boston neighborhoods. Typically, the busiest time of the year when rental competition is at its highest is around January 1st as well as September 1st, especially given the fact that this is when many students and individuals moving to Boston for work flood the city. The improving economy and strengthening real estate industry has driven prices up over the past two years to where rents were having year-over-year increases by as much as 12% in the Hub. In addition, the lack of inventory has made it increasingly difficult for people to find a place to live, and this increased competition has also cause prices to climb. While overall prices are still bumping up in Boston, it is by only 1.9% annually, however in some areas the opposite is true.
As it has been often reported, the massive movements in the construction industry as of late has seen Boston essentially be defined by cranes. From Downtown to the Seaport District, motions are in place to continue this progression to build far more residential spaces that between now and the very near future will see thousands of new homes become available on the market for sale and for rent. As a result, apartment rents have actually fallen as of late in these specific areas where the inventory levels are growing the most. The CoStar Group reports that the Seaport District in particular has seen rents drop by 9% in the Third Quarter of this year due to the rising competition amongst new buildings to secure tenants.
Mark Hickey, a real estate economist at the CoStar Group shares that, The threat of the newer buildings coming to the Seaport was enough that landlords wanted to have lower rents there to maintain their tenant base. Bostons tenant base is one of the best nationwide. The vacancy rate across the city since 2011 has hovered between just 2-3%. Those developers tasked with establishing a completely brand new, thriving Seaport District will hope to bank on this statistic and that their buildings will soon be bustling with tenant interest as well. As for now, Seaport rents are down during this Third Quarter from $2,136/month on average during this time last year, to $1,952/month this year.
In the Beacon Hill, North End, Charlestown, and West End neighborhoods, rents are also down from $2,256/month last year to $2,133/month today. For the Back Bay and South End much is the same, with rents only decreasing ever so slightly from $2,599/month in Q3 of 2012 to $2,539/month this year. In the Fenway, the average held at around $2,113/month annually, however in Chinatown and the Financial District, the rental levels were at their highest in the Hub coming in at $2,961/month. Hickey notes that, Its clear that landlords pushed rents as much as they could, but tenants are maxed out and rent growth is now similar to peoples growth in incomes.
With the still developing economy, job market, and real estate recovery, the incomes and confidence of the populace will also keep strengthening. This dramatic boost in supply on every corner of this area of Boston means that competition is fierce among developers to get their buildings filled. With that said, the key is to locate budding areas as such that are being built today for a more prosperous tomorrow if a deal is to be sought on an apartment for rent.
More Information: Boston Business Journal