Money

The 5 factors that inflate your rent the most

Rent prices are on the rise. Over the past six months, they've grown steadily, increasing at an average monthly rate of 0.4 percent, according to data from Apartment List. In 2016, rent prices rose year-over-year in 92 of the 100 largest U.S. cities.

RentHop looked at common apartment amenities such as laundry rooms, fitness centers and outdoor space in the 10 largest metro areas in the U.S. to identify what drives up rent prices the most.

That's because, on an individual level, what you're paying in rent comes down to where you live and what your building has to offer. If you want certain amenities, you're going to have to pay a premium. If you can live without a dishwasher or a doorman, you're more likely to find a cheaper place.

RentHop found that the number of rooms and amount of square footage are the primary factors that affect prices, but renters pay extra for several amenities as well. Here are the five features most commonly correlated with higher prices:

  • Doorman
  • Elevator
  • Fitness center
  • Laundry in unit
  • Parking

Location also makes a difference. In dense urban spaces such as New York and Chicago where it's common to live without a car, parking spaces don't come at the same premium as in more car-friendly cities like Atlanta and Dallas.

Check out how popular amenities stack up across the 10 largest metro areas in the U.S.

Using New York City as a case study, RentHop also analyzed exactly how much each feature adds to the price of a rental. Controlling for the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, they found that having a doorman increases apartment rents the most by far, adding about $260 a month to the base price.

"This may seem like a large amount for just a doorman, but it makes sense as it is a good indicator that the building overall will be very nice and is likely in a more expensive neighborhood," RentHop reports.

Here's how much New Yorkers are paying on average for amenities.

At the end of the day, choosing the perfect apartment comes down to more than a list of amenities. But if you're looking for a good deal, consider which extras you can live without.

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