Feb 6, 2023 - Real Estate

Salt Lake City rents remain high, for now

Change in average asking rent for apartments in select markets
Data: Moody's Analytics; Table: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

In the fourth quarter of 2022, the average rent in the Salt Lake City metro area was $1,321 — up 7.5% from a year earlier, per economic research firm Moody's Analytics.

Why it matters: Affordability concerns are beginning to weigh down the city's booming rental market.

What's happening: Many would-be home buyers chose to rent longer last year, sustaining apartment demand, economists say. But people are hitting their spending limit.

  • For the first time in over two decades, the average renting household now has to spend 30% of its income on rent, per a new Moody's report.
  • Last year, Salt Lake County's apartment market was deemed the "tightest" in county history due to high rents and low housing inventory, per a University of Utah Kem C. Gardner Institute report released last March.

Year-over-year rent growth slowed in the second half of 2022 across the board, "and we expect further deceleration as new supply makes it to market at the same time the labor market softens," Moody's senior economist Lu Chen tells Axios.

Zoom out: Rents are already falling in cities that were at the heart of the pandemic home-price boom, Axios' Matt Phillips reports, citing Realtor.com data.

What we're watching: A surge in new apartment construction could bring down prices.

Yes, but: Experts say most cities will "remain undersupplied with the kind of affordable units that see the highest demand," per the Wall Street Journal.


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