Jacksonville ranks best ‘large city’ for renters, RentCafe study finds

Ask just about anyone in Jacksonville right now, and they’ll tell you rent is high. RentCafe and Point 2 Homes report the average rent for a Jacksonville apartment is $1,453 dollars a month.

Other sites like Zumper have found the average to be $1,275 for a one-bedroom unit—a 31 percent increase from last year. “People want to be there; that’s made it desirable,” realtor Mike Boyle said.

Boyle helps people buy and sell homes in Northeast Florida. He says the steady stream of newcomers has hiked the cost of housing. “People coming from other places, which is happening a lot, you know, some of these other places were always this or more expensive,” he said.

A 2022 report by RentCafe ranks Jacksonville as the nation’s best “large city” (those with populations 600,000 or more) for renters, and sixth-best for renters overall.

“If you’re thinking of a great place to rent on a national scale, I see where they’re getting that from. If you ask people that grew up in Jacksonville their whole life, they might be going, ‘oh my God, what’s going on here?’” Boyle said. “People who’ve been here who are used to paying $1,100 for a nice house two, three years ago, they’re in shock.”

Other cities RentCafe considers affordable after Jacksonville include Charlotte, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston. In 2019 the site ranked Manhattan, NY, Los Angeles, and San Francisco as the most expensive cities with rents soaring into the $6,000 dollar range.

Though Jacksonville’s rates aren’t that high, Boyle says they’re still pricey. “$1,400′s getting to be tough.

To find a decent three-bedroom, I don’t think $1,400′s even going to be enough right now.” Boyle doesn’t see rent going down any time soon. He suggests looking on Craigslist for cheaper rentals; just be wary of scams.

STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories

Download WJAX Apps
Download WJAX Apps