WOODINVILLE, Wash. - Comparing June rents with rents a year ago, the Seattle metro area saw increases averaging 7.5 percent, according to AXIOmetrics, a company that analyzes rental data.
Sandra Jiminez, who works as a Boeing supervisor, said her extended family moved in together to save on rent. She even moved to a different Bothell apartment last year for a cheaper option.
“The more you win, the more they take away from you. And you don’t have that much savings,” Jiminez said.
She said she had to look for a new apartment when her previous one announced an increase of $200 a month.
At the lowest end of the spectrum, Beacon Hill, Rainier Valley and Skyway saw rents 4.4 percent higher than a year ago, and Downtown Seattle, Queen Anne and Capitol Hill saw rents 4.8 percent higher.
Even though the downtown Seattle area may have seen a lesser rent increase, those neighborhoods still have the highest rents in the region, above $2,000.
Bellevue and Issaquah have the next-highest rents at just under $2,000, and Redmond rents are sitting at around $1,900 a month.
AXIOmetrics also detailed the rate of increase in each sub-market, which showed that Redmond’s rate of increase more than doubled since the June 2014 calculation. The rate of increase in North Seattle and Northgate nearly doubled as well.
Thomas Tollifson, the president of T-Square Properties in Woodinville, said there were many homeowners who became “what we call ‘accidental landlords,’ who really didn’t want to be a landlord, but it was their best option at the time.”
Tollifson said those homeowners are now thinking of selling their homes, thereby displacing tenants who have sometimes lived there for several years.
He said that shortage of rental options may be creating higher rents.
Tollifson said although houses for rent aren’t seeing the increases that apartments are, he said, “For two years I’ve been thinking that, well, we’ve reached the top, but we never really have yet.”
He said the Bothell and Woodinville area has remained desirable to renters, many of whom are being hired by companies nearby that pay well.