Renting an apartment in a multi-family building may not be the norm in the U.S., but it was the case for approximately 40 million Americans in 2019. Some of the states with the largest share of apartment dwellers are New York, North Dakota, California, Maryland, Nevada, and Texas. In New York, nearly one quarter of the population lives in an apartment. These are also some of the most competitive housing markets in the country with supply often struggling to catch up. Indeed, New York, Dallas-Forth, and Houston were the metropolitan areas with the highest number of new apartment deliveries in 2020. While supply has been on an overall upwards trend in the past decade, since 2018, the number of newly built apartments for rent has been declining.
Unlike purchasing a house, renting an apartment requires a much smaller financial investment and offers more flexibility. While this may be the case, rental rates in the United States have been on the rise, raising concerns about affordability. As the most populous metropolitan area in the United States, New York boasts one of the most expensive housing markets. In February 2021, renters paid on average 1,261 U.S. dollars per month for a studio apartment, which was one of the highest rental rates across the country. For the ones who can afford it, buying is also an option but it will cost you. In 2020, the average price of a studio in Manhattan was 577,500 U.S. dollars, roughly 230,000 U.S. dollars above the average sales price of a new single-family house in the United States.