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States with the fastest-growing rents

  • #21. South Carolina

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 80.8%
    --- Median rent: $510 in 2000; $922 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 49.7%
    --- Median household income: $37,570 in 2000; $56,227 in 2019

    The increase in South Carolina’s rental prices have outpaced the growth of wages in the state. One factor is a boom of people moving into the area, which is exhausting the housing supply. While the state has a rental assistance program to help tenants during the pandemic, some advocates warn that there may be a rental crisis on the horizon.

  • #20. West Virginia

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 81.3%
    --- Median rent: $401 in 2000; $727 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 66.1%
    --- Median household income: $29,411 in 2000; $48,850 in 2019

    West Virginia’s growth in rents has outpaced its growth in median household income. The state has a severe shortage of affordable rentals, which is causing a housing crisis, according to Ellen Allen of Covenant House. Data from Stout shows that up to 44,000 renter households in West Virginia may be at risk of eviction during the pandemic.

  • #19. New Jersey

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 83.2%
    --- Median rent: $751 in 2000; $1,376 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 70.1%
    --- Median household income: $50,405 in 2000; $85,751 in 2019

    Workers in New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey all compete for housing in the Garden State, which increases the cost of rent. The state has also scaled back affordable housing incentives, driving up rental prices. With some 26,000 residents at risk of eviction during the pandemic, the state government is considering a bill that would keep eviction records confidential.

  • #18. Utah

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 83.9%
    --- Median rent: $597 in 2000; $1,098 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 59.4%
    --- Median household income: $47,550 in 2000; $75,780 in 2019

    Utah’s escalating rent prices can be traced to the area’s rapid population growth over the years, which has put pressure on the housing supply. Stout predicts that the state will receive around 40,000 eviction filings by January 2021. It also estimates that Utah is facing a rent shortfall of at least $120 million amid the pandemic.

  • #17. Louisiana

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 85.8%
    --- Median rent: $466 in 2000; $866 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 66.3%
    --- Median household income: $30,718 in 2000; $51,073 in 2019

    While Louisiana has offered emergency rental assistance to needy tenants during the pandemic, the state has not implemented its own eviction moratorium, according to Money. Between 239,000 and 287,000 renter households in the state are at risk of getting kicked out of their homes, per Stout.

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  • #16. Montana

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 85.9%
    --- Median rent: $447 in 2000; $831 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 74.4%
    --- Median household income: $32,777 in 2000; $57,153 in 2019

    Montana’s mountainous geography and large swaths of federal land means there is a limit to land that can be used to develop affordable housing. To help tenants who are struggling during the pandemic, the state doled out more than $4.5 million in financial assistance for housing between May and October, per KTVH.

  • #15. Wyoming

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 88.1%
    --- Median rent: $437 in 2000; $822 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 64%
    --- Median household income: $39,629 in 2000; $65,003 in 2019

    In June, Wyoming set up an emergency housing program to provide rental assistance of up to $2,000 per month for tenants having trouble paying their bills due to the pandemic. Despite the influx of cash, up to 30,000 renter households in the state have struggled to pay rent and may face eviction, according to Stout.

  • #14. Rhode Island

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 88.6%
    --- Median rent: $553 in 2000; $1,043 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 68.7%
    --- Median household income: $42,197 in 2000; $71,169 in 2019

    After receiving reports that landlords were trying to kick tenants out of their rentals without a court order, Rhode Island’s attorney general warned property owners to respect tenant rights, according to The Providence Journal. Stout estimates that the state will receive about 30,000 eviction filings by January 2021 and is facing a rent shortfall of up to $119 million.

  • #13. Texas

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 90.1%
    --- Median rent: $574 in 2000; $1,091 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 65.9%
    --- Median household income: $38,609 in 2000; $64,034 in 2019

    One major reason behind the spike in rent in Texas is the influx of new residents, particularly those coming for higher-income jobs. Zoning regulations and a lack of state funding has made affordable units for low-income individuals limited. The state’s Eviction Diversion Program allows tenants who earn no more than twice the national poverty rate to make alternative arrangements with their landlord if the pandemic has made it difficult to pay rent, per Money.

  • #12. Oregon

    - 2000-2019 median rent growth: 91.1%
    --- Median rent: $620 in 2000; $1,185 in 2019
    - 2000-2019 median household income growth: 57.8%
    --- Median household income: $42,499 in 2000; $67,058 in 2019

    One unique factor affecting the cost of rent in Oregon is anti-sprawl legislation. Even though the state has a lot of land, there are limits on where housing developments such as urban rental units can be built, which leads to a limited supply that drives up costs. Landlords say that a moratorium on evictions during the pandemic is making it difficult to keep their heads above water, per OregonLive.

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