Rent prices dropping nationwide but Wasatch Front renters face different picture

Jul 17, 2023, 10:54 PM | Updated: Jul 18, 2023, 6:02 am

SALT LAKE CITY — In 2022, we told you about Brenda White, a woman who found herself homeless after her landlord decided to sell the home she had been living in.

“Just a place for my family, so we can have a normal life. This is not normal,” she said about living in a motel.

Eventually, she found a place to live, but stories like hers were common all over the country. But now, rent prices are leveling off or even falling in some places.

“On the national level, rent prices actually went down on a yearly basis,” said researcher Jon Leckie of the rental listings website, Rent.

For the first time since March 2020, rent prices are less expensive than they were the year before.

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According to the data shared with the KSL Investigators, our neighbors in the West saw the most significant decreases – with Nevada, Idaho and Washington state leading the pack. Utah is down too, by 1.41% from this time last year. But Leckie tempers the drop by warning this data does not paint the whole picture.

“Salt Lake City has not seen the relief that that the rest of the nation has,” Leckie said.

He pointed out that while prices are easing statewide, they remain high along the Wasatch Front.

“Salt Lake City – the rents continue to climb.”

So, if you have been looking to make a move, Leckie said tenants might have more leverage than they used to, but in the Salt Lake area, where housing continues to be in short supply, landlords still have the upper hand.

“If you can wait, maybe try holding off until the fall or winter of this year,” he said.

Rent prices will probably never fall down to what they were before the pandemic erupted.

What this data shows is that, more than anything, rent price flows are getting back to normal. Leckie said we are back to seasonal trends where prices tend to go up in the spring, peak in the summer, then tend to drop again in the fall and winter before picking back up in the following spring.

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Rent prices dropping nationwide but Wasatch Front renters face different picture