Cost of land, regulatory expense, higher taxes, land use control and other factors make it enormously expensive even to rent in California
- San Diego apartments average either $1,887 to $2,028
- Los Angeles apartments cost even more
- Las Vegas is less than half that
By Hal DeKeyser
California apartment rents are high; certainly by Las Vegas standards.
A story in the San Diego newspaper lamented that average apartment rental there has run up to $1,887, a record.
That’s quoting data by a local firm, MarketPointe Realty Advisors. According to RentCafe, which tracks rents nationwide, an average San Diego apartment will set you back $2,028. That’s just a 3 percent jump year over year, but it’s up 15 percent since 2015.
Either figure is about twice that of Las Vegas — or more.
In Las Vegas, the average apartment rent is $952, up 6 percent from $896 in 2017.
You can’t even get a studio in San Diego for that, according to RentCafe. Those average $1,479 a month. A one-bedroom goes for $1,793 a month; a two-bedroom for $2,190.
Even pricier further north in LA, SF
Los Angeles is even more expensive, with an apartment rent of $2,220. That’s 5 percent up the past year. You can get a studio for an average monthly. A one bedroom will cost $2,037 and a two bedroom, $2,726.
Not pricey enough?
Head farther north, to San Francisco, and expect to pay an average $3,426. If you must stay in a studio (and at those prices, that’s much more likely), expect to spend $2,500.
How else do we compare?
Those prices are perhaps even better than the differences among housings costs in Vegas vs. California.
While Las Vegas has been appreciated at a faster pace than most of the nation in the past year, close to 12 percent, that’s still coming off the worst housing bust in the country during the Great Recession. And Las Vegas still hasn’t gotten back to peak values, unlike the rest of the country.
Prices are expected to continue climbing in Nevada, although some predict a slowing of the rate growth. And there are still townhouses and condos, including new ones, going in the $100s here. You won’t find that anywhere in Coastal California.
In fact, just these week was a story about a burned-out Bay Area “home” going up for $800,000. They’ll probably be offered more, as the property could be scraped for $20,000-$30,000 and a new house built that could sell for $1.5 million or more. And that’s with a lot to build on that’s under 6,000 square feet.
Maybe Las Vegas real estate is a much better investment than California apartment rents. It’s certainly a more possible place to buy a house or rent an apartment.
Want the (temporarily free) book on Vegas vs. Cal?
If you’d like an advance copy of Hal DeKeyser’s upcoming book: “DumpCal – Leave California for Las Vegas to double your lifestyle for half the cost,” contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org with “DumpCal book” in the subject line. It’s free for a limited time.