Report shows Tacoma saw fastest rent growth among metro cities in Puget Sound

Newly-released data by Apartment List, an online marketplace for apartment listings, shows rental prices in Tacoma grew 18.9% in the past 12 months.

Among metropolitan areas in the Puget Sound, Tacoma saw the highest year-over-year rent growth, the report shows:

  • Tacoma: 18.9%
  • Bellevue: 18.7%
  • Bothell: 16.8%
  • Everett: 16.7%
  • Redmond: 16.3%
  • Renton: 16.0%
  • Lynnwood: 15.4%
  • Issaquah: 13.7%
  • Kirkland: 13.2%
  • Kent: 13.0%
  • Seattle: 12.0%

Washington state’s average was at 14.2% and the national average was 15.1%, the report shows.

While rental prices grew, the actual cost of a rental is still cheaper in Tacoma compared to other metro cities in the Puget Sound. The median monthly price for a two-bedroom apartment in Tacoma was the lowest, the report shows:

  • Redmond: $2,560
  • Bellevue: $2,520
  • Kirkland: $2,400
  • Bothell: $2,260
  • Renton: $2,190
  • Seattle: $2,170
  • Kent: $1,860
  • Everett: $1,730
  • Lynnwood: $1,710
  • Tacoma: $1,680

KIRO 7 reached out to the Tacoma Housing Authority about the report’s findings, but did not hear back.

Several renters in Tacoma believe the increased prices correlate with the increased number of residents. Tacoma saw a 9.9% increase in population from 2010 to 2019, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

“I think a lot of people are going South for the better rent and then it is going to increase,” Kayla McTeidue, who rents an apartment in Tacoma, said.

“We need more options,” Mercedes McCann, who rents an apartment in Tacoma, said. “And then I think for the ones that are currently affordable, they need to stay affordable. I don’t think it should be legal to increase rent by $100 every time your lease renews… people’s income is not going up at the same rate the rent is. Eventually, we’re going to reach a breaking point and people just aren’t going be able to afford housing.”

Marilyn Olson agreed that rental costs are high, but expressed sympathy for local landlords.

“(Rent) is extremely high. It’s a very high cost… sometimes at least a third of your income,” Olson said. “But if people think that the landlord’s are getting so much, they need to look at getting a piece of property and seeing how exactly hard it is.”