16 Cities Where it Costs Over $3,000 to Rent a Two-Bedroom

Renters who are trying to find an affordable place in unaffordable cities are facing high prices.
Updated May 2, 2024
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Housing prices may have started to cool in some areas of the country, but apartment rentals are still expensive in a number of cities..

How bad is it in some places? There are a few popular cities where you may have to pay an average of more than $3,000 for a two-bedroom apartment, according to the July 2022 Rent Report.

If you’re trying to find ways to pay your rent on a budget, you may want to avoid these cities to keep some cash in your pocket.

Chicago, Illinois

beatrice prève/Adobe Chicago city reflects

Chicago, known as the Windy City, is the largest city in the Midwest. It also may blow away your money for a two-bedroom apartment. Rent in the city will set you back $3,247 for a place that size, according to Rent.com.

Denver, Colorado

dbvirago/Adobe Denver Skyline and Mountains Beyond Lake

The Mile High city also may have mile-high prices when it comes to rent. According to Rent.com, a two-bedroom apartment in Denver will run an average of $3,253 per month. Part of the reason may be Denver’s population growth in the past few decades, causing more competition in the market.

Washington, D.C.

f11photo/Adobe capitol building in Washington DC

Living in the nation’s capital can be a pricey endeavor for a renter if they want to stay within the District of Columbia. If you want to live where all the political action is, a two-bedroom apartment will cost you $3,260 on average per month.

Seattle, Washington

Tommy/Adobe Seattle Skyline at sunset with Space needle

The city on the west side of Washington State is the home of grunge, Starbucks, and high rental prices. An average two-bedroom apartment is going to set you back about $3,398 per month.

Yonkers, New York

demerzel21/Adobe Glenwood Power Plant - Yonkers New York

Surprisingly, the only city in New York on this list is Yonkers, which is just north of the Bronx in Westchester County. It’s an easy commute into the city, so rent here for a two-bedroom will cost you an average of $3,468 a month.

Santa Ana, California

Matt Gush/Adobe daytime skyline view of downtown Santa Ana

The first of many cities in California on this list is Santa Ana, located south of Los Angeles. A two-bedroom rental will cost you $3,487 there.

Fremont, California

Matt Gush/Adobe afternoon aerial view of the city of Fremont California USA

Fremont is in the Bay Area of California, which has been a hot housing market for at least a decade. Renters are reminded of this when they have to pay an average monthly rent of $3,606 for a two-bedroom apartment in the area.

Irvine, California

Jacob/Adobe aerial view of a large Public University in Irvine California

South of Santa Ana is Irvine, another expensive city in southern California. Rent there can cost you $3,780 for a month in a two-bedroom rental.

Pro tip: Finding easy ways to boost your bank account can help ease high living costs.

San Jose, California

Dreamframer/Adobe San Jose California and Silicon Valley

Back up to the Bay Area is San Jose, which is popular for employees of tech companies in the area. A two-bedroom apartment can set you back $3,808 per month.

Oakland, California

Steve/Adobe Lake Merritt Oakland California

Across the Bay from San Francisco is Oakland, which follows the trend of expensive two-bedroom rentals in the Bay Area. Having a lease on a two-bedroom apartment will cost you an average of $4,252 per month.

San Francisco, California

Marco/Adobe San Francisco Beach View At Golden Hour

The second largest city in the Bay Area has the largest monthly tab for rent for a two-bedroom apartment. An apartment there with two bedrooms can cost an average of $4,575 a month.

San Diego, California

bennymarty/Adobe Gaslamp Quarter entrance

One of the most southern cities in California is San Diego, which is often said to have the best climate in America. Consequently, a two-bedroom apartment can set you back $4,592. Yes, that’s the average price for only one month’s worth of rent.

Los Angeles, California

dell/Adobe Los Angeles hot sunset view with palm tree

The biggest city in California also has some of the biggest costs for rent. A two-bedroom apartment in L.A. can cost an average of $4,787 a month.

Glendale, California

Mauricio/Adobe Glendale California downtown Brand Street

The most expensive city in California? Glendale, which is north of Los Angeles and near Burbank and Universal City. If you live in Glendale, you can expect to pay an average of $4,917 per month for a two-bedroom rental.

Boston, Massachusetts

Boston is one of only two cities on this list that has an average cost of rent that’s above the $5,000 mark. For a two-bedroom apartment, you can expect to pay a whopping $5,870 on average per month for a lease.

Jersey City, New Jersey

dbvirago/Adobe skyline of Jersey City New Jersey

Across the Hudson River from New York City is Jersey City, which has the most expensive leases for two-bedroom rentals in the country. A two-bedroom apartment in the city could set you back almost $7,000, with an average cost of $6,899 per month.

Bottom line

Noel/Adobe FOR RENT sign posted in lawn advertising home for rent

You may need to find ways to make extra money just to afford some of these more expensive cities. If you need to live in one of these cities, you may need to pay more than 30% of your monthly income in rent.

For new college grads who may be moving for a job, be sure to consider the cost of rent when you’re making a decision about which cities you can afford to live in.

Author Details

Jenny Cohen Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.

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