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Houston Rent Increases Slowed in October, But Suburbs Continue To Ride Higher

Houston multifamily rent growth slowed in October, increasing just 0.5% for the month, though that still represents a marked 9.6% increase over the same time last year and the 10th straight month of gains for the city as it emerges from nearly two years of the coronavirus pandemic.


A new rent report from Apartment List indicates median rents in Houston stand at $1K per month for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,190 for a two-bedroom. Houston's year-over-year rent growth lags the state average of 14.1% and the national average of 15.8%, but some suburbs are tracking and even outpacing both averages.

Missouri City has seen the fastest rent growth in the metro, boasting an annual increase of 17%. The median two-bedroom there goes for $1,731 a month, while one-bedrooms are available for  $1,524. League City, which boasts the most expensive rents in the metro, saw rates dip 0.4% in October, but is still up 13% for the year, with a two-bedroom median monthly rent of $1,863.

Pearland saw the biggest rent drop of 0.7% in October and Baytown was listed as the city offering the least expensive rents, with a two-bedroom monthly median of $1,117.

According to, Houston rent is growing at a slower rate than other Texas cities, especially Austin, which had almost 30% rent growth over the past year. The report also suggests multifamily residential growth continues to be clustered in suburbs as rents and occupancy in the city stagnate somewhat.

Census data previously reported by Bisnow showed Texas population growth is skewing young, diverse and suburban, with Houston-area Fort Bend and Montgomery counties growing by 41% and 34.2%, respectively, over the past 10 years.

September saw annualized growth as high as 25.5% in the Tomball and Spring areas, though October proved slower. Top Houston submarkets, including Kingwood, Spring, Richmond and Katy, failed to top 20% growth. The Bear Creek, Copperfield and Fairfield areas had the highest growth at 21%, per Apartment Data.

The beginning of 2021 saw a rapid climb in rents and occupancy throughout the city. Now, as the year peters out, those figures have also steadied, with rents and occupancy virtually unchanged compared to September. Apartment Data listed overall Houston occupancy at 91.9% in October, up only a tenth of a percentage point over the previous month.

Houston still remains one of the more affordable cities in Texas, with only San Antonio listing cheaper average monthly rent. Houston also boasts the largest average rental unit size at 887 SF.