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Austin rent totals rose faster than those in any other U.S. city in the past decade

Local tenants paid a whopping $36.7 billion since 2010

Austin had some whopping rent hikes in the past decade.
| Getty Images

Austinites who lease their homes might not pay the most rent of those in any U.S. city—that dubious honor goes to New York, followed by Los Angeles and some other huge places, of course. But they did experience the most rapid increase in overall rent paid in the past decade of any major U.S. metro. According to a recent Zillow study, the total amount tenants have paid in rent has risen 92.6 percent since 2010.

A different study put average rent for an Austin two-bedroom apartment at $1,470 per month—behind New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. That’s just one study, and for apartments only, but it’s the pace of growth, more than the amount, that sets Austin apart in rather depressing way (at least for renters).

Raleigh, North Carolina, and Denver, Colorado, were the cities with the second and third fastest rate of increase since 2010, at 91 percent and 88.2 percent, respectively, Nationally, rent amounts increased 46.5 percent.

The near-doubling of rent in the past decade parallels the incredibly rapid growth in the Austin area during that time and accounts, in part, for the rapid rise. Since, according to U.S. Census numbers, Austin is the fastest-growing large metro in the United States, it has more renters handing over more money to landlords, thus increasing the total amount paid.

While Austin is 22nd on Zillow’s list of total amounts paid, according to the study, that’s higher on the list than its size alone might indicate, since it’s only the 35th-largest market by overall population.

Whatever the case, Austin rent continues to rise at a fast clip year over year. While some cities saw much sharper increase in the past year, the Market Watch site predicts that “for residents of cities like Austin and Atlanta, which have seen bumper rental price growth throughout the decade, there’s little relief in sight.”