Denver Renters Rebounding While Concessions Remain High

New data shows a record number of Denver renters are searching for a new place to live on — the leading online apartment listing site with nearly 14,615 apartments listed in the Denver area. Prospective renters are enthusiastic about the market, searching for cheaper rents, taking advantage of increased concessions, and looking for properties with more space.
This increase in consumer optimism is a positive sign following a sharp drop in searches (since peaking in January 2020), brought on by COVID and social distancing efforts. This rise in search history suggests tenants are no longer putting their apartment hunt on pause, rather they’re moving out of expensive, relatively smaller units in search of larger living spaces that can better accommodate working from home, multi-family living scenarios, etc.
A breakdown of the most affordable submarkets for every rent level based on the average of all rental units.

Beginning in mid-March, rents in Denver fell by about 2.5 percent through April, a sharper drop than the national average. Rents have since rebounded and actually outperformed the national average in parts of the third quarter. Suburban rents are driving the recovery, while urban rents are still weighing on Denver’s apartment market. Since June, average rents in Cherry Creek have dropped $202 and Riverfront Park rents have dropped $174.

Denver apartment complex’s are also getting creative to entice renters with offers like living six weeks free with free parking for a year to 50 percent off rent for three months. Concessions jumped sharply to new heights nationally in October 2020 with 52 percent of apartment buildings in Denver offering a deal, up from 27 percent in October 2019. Additionally, 18 percent of apartment buildings are offering one or more concessions exceeding one month’s free rent — a tell-tale sign of a stressed market.

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