With housing prices continuing to rise in Petworth and the surrounding neighborhoods, and the increase in new residents every month into the District, the cost of rent is an important factor for those seeking a realistically affordable place to live.
True affordable housing, dependent upon AMI (area median income) is just as paramount, and the going rent on market-rate units has an impact on affordable housing -- and on the economic health of a neighborhood.
Real estate website Trulia reached out to me to see if I'd be interested in publishing some of their data about rental costs in the surrounding neighborhoods, and I agreed, thinking readers could find it useful. While it doesn't cover every neighborhood, it's an interesting and quick look at recent rental costs. Content below is written by Jennifer Riner from Trulia.com.
Much like home prices, rental rates across the US continue to escalate. On the East and West Coasts rents hit harder, often comprising more than 30 percent of wages.
In DC, the downtown, Mount Vernon Square and George Washington University areas represent some of the priciest markets. The median cost of renting a one-bedroom in downtown DC is $2,398 per month. While those rental prices are high, they pale in comparison to the area around George Washington University, where the median price of a one-bedroom rental is a steep $3,037 per month.
DC’s "dark cloud" of booming rents has a silver lining. Ward 4 offers neighborhoods with moderate rental rates – most often below $2,000 per month. For a more moderate rental cost, consider the following Ward 4 neighborhoods.
Brick Red to Burgundy: higher percentage of 2-bedroom apartments over $2,000
Yellow: medium # of 2-bedroom apartments over $2,000.
A thrivingly diverse community at the northwest end of DC and the lower half of Ward 4, Petworth has kept its community feel despite the growth of independent businesses and an increase in cost of home ownership. Attracting both newly arrived and long-time residents, Petworth is still considered "affordable" compared to the costlier areas in DC. In Petworth, average rent within the one-bedroom market is a moderate $1,515 per month. Just 4.1% of one-bedrooms are listed over $2,000 per month, with only 1% of rentals in Petworth costing more than $2,500 per month. (Biased note: Plus, Petworth rocks.)
Maintaining a strong sense of community and historical significance, Brightwood attracts a variety of residents searching for reasonable rents. With just 2.6% of one-bedrooms for rent costing over $2,500, finding fair-priced rent in Brightwood is doable. The average cost for renting a one-bedroom is only $1,398 per month, making it the second most affordable neighborhood for renters in Ward 4.
Brightwood Park is situated just south of Brightwood, and mirrors many of the same tight-knit qualities residents have come to love. With an average price of one-bedroom apartments at $1,300 per month, Brightwood Park is the least expensive neighborhood in Ward 4. As of April 2016, not a single one-bedroom rental in Brightwood Park was listed higher than $2,000 per month.
Chevy Chase sits northwest from Petworth, right on the cusp of the Maryland border. The charming, tree-lined neighborhood has a average rent of $1,650 per month. Only 3% of one-bedrooms are listed above $2,000 per month, lessening the likelihood of encountering a high-priced listing during your Chevy Chase rental search. Not a single one-bedroom apartment currently listed in Chevy Chase is higher than $2,500 per month.
While affordability and DC aren’t exactly synonymous, renting in the nation’s capital doesn’t have to break the budget – especially if you opt to live in reasonable Ward 4 communities.
Note from Drew: This isn't a sponsored article, no money changing hands, just passing along data researched and provided by Trulia. Let me know in the comments below if you found this article useful so I know if I should accept similar posts from third-party providers.