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323 Apartments for rent in National City, CA

Read Guide >
Last updated April 25 at 10:04am UTC
701 Salot St.
National City
National City, CA
Updated April 25 at 10:04am UTC
3 Bedrooms
1523 E Ave. Apt A
National City
National City, CA
Updated April 20 at 10:08am UTC
2 Bedrooms
Results within 1 miles of National City, CA
162 Montebello St.
Chula Vista, CA
Updated April 24 at 9:56am UTC
3 Bedrooms
6640 Varney Dr
San Diego, CA
Updated April 23 at 1:52am UTC
3 Bedrooms
4300 Newton Ave Unit 108
Mountain View
San Diego, CA
Updated April 22 at 11:43am UTC
2 Bedrooms
316 S Willie James Jones Ave
Lincoln Park
San Diego, CA
Updated April 21 at 9:57am UTC
2 Bedrooms
33 Port Royale
Coronado, CA
Updated April 20 at 10:17am UTC
3 Bedrooms
6640 Varney Drive
San Diego, CA
Updated April 20 at 10:11am UTC
3 Bedrooms
201 Twin Oaks Ave #3
Central Chula Vista
Chula Vista, CA
Updated April 20 at 10:09am UTC
1 Bedroom
51 Minot Avenue
Chula Vista, CA
Updated April 19 at 10:00am UTC
3 Bedrooms
93 Port of Spain
Coronado, CA
Updated April 18 at 5:04am UTC
3 Bedrooms
4 Buccaneer Way
Coronado, CA
Updated April 18 at 4:09am UTC
5 Bedrooms
60 Aruba Bend
Coronado, CA
Updated April 18 at 4:09am UTC
3 Bedrooms
82 Montego Court
Coronado, CA
Updated April 18 at 4:04am UTC
2 Bedrooms
4125 Gamma Street
San Diego, CA
Updated April 17 at 5:41pm UTC
2 Bedrooms
23 Kingston Ct
Coronado, CA
Updated April 17 at 5:39pm UTC
2 Bedrooms
42 Kingston Court S
Coronado, CA
Updated April 13 at 4:48am UTC
3 Bedrooms
Coronado, CA
Updated April 5 at 10:05am UTC
3 Bedrooms
Coronado, CA
Updated March 25 at 5:17pm UTC
2 Bedrooms
999 L Ave
National City
National City, CA
Updated April 5 at 10:33am UTC
3 Bedrooms
2721 Hopkins St
Paradise Hills
San Diego, CA
Updated April 18 at 10:59am UTC
3 Bedrooms
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City Guide
National City
Searching for Rentals in National City

Only about 31% of National City residents can afford to own a home here, so if you plan to rent, you'll be joining the majority, since 61% of the homes here are rentals. The vacancy rate is about 8%, which means you should give yourself a head start of at least two months if you want to be sure to find a place before you have to move.

What will a rental run you in this city?

The cost of living is a little higher here than the national average, but that's par for the course in Southern California, especially when you're this close to the Pacific Ocean. In fact, once you get a look at the cost of living in more affluent cities nearby, you'll rush back to National City, eager to pay the comparatively lower rent!

How should you prepare to find a rental?

Just make sure your credit score and rental history are both decent enough for any sane landlord to want to take a chance on you, especially if you want a nice place. The better you look on paper, the faster you'll find a spacious two-bedroom apartment or house rental that has been well taken care of. Of course, having the means to put down a deposit right away can also help during your search for an apartment or rental house.

Where to Live in National City

You won't exactly find beachfront neighborhoods here like you might in other San Diego suburbs, but you'll still enjoy that casual Southern California vibe anywhere you go in this city. So if you're a fan of the laid-back, fun-loving feel of this region, you'll be happy in any of National City's neighborhoods. Plus, you'll be saving money by choosing this area over the beach cities! Here's an overview of some of the most well-known parts of this town.

City Center: As you might guess, this is an urban area toward the center of the city. As such, it is easily walkable and features lots of rental properties, including high-rise apartments and single-family homes. The population here is diverse and includes people of all ages, and it's conveniently located next to the all-important freeway in SoCal Interstate 5. $$

Lincoln Acres: Another urban area is Lincoln Acres, which is near where State Route 54 intersects with Interstate 805. This community features mostly small apartment complexes, single-family homes, and some mobile homes. It's within a short distance of National City Golf Course and Las Palmas Park. Plus, there's National City Municipal Pool nearby, and it's perfect for those days that you have your swimsuit and towel all ready to go but don't want to drive the extra few minutes to get to the beach! $

Stockman and Sweetwater: Just south of Lincoln Acres is a rather expensive area that's technically the farthest southeast you can go without leaving National City. This area is urban, like most of the city, but the homes here are larger and mostly owner-occupied. It encompasses Sweetwater Heights Park and is right next to Chula Vista Municipal Golf Course in the neighboring city of you guessed it Chula Vista. $$$$

Plaza and Euclid: This is another affluent neighborhood in National City. Located at the northeastern edge, it is near Paradise Valley Hospital, which also happens to be this city's largest employer. This area is also close to Paradise Valley Park and Recreation Center, several shopping centers, and naval housing. $$$$

National City Blvd and Civic Center:You cant miss this part of town because it's closest to the bay, and set up along some of the busiest roads in this city, giving it an urban feel. If you want to live rather close to the coast in National City, this is where you need to look for properties, most of which are rentals that are on the small side. This is another area that's near I-5, and it's also fairly close to Naval Base San Diego. Plus, it encompasses Pepper Park and is conveniently nearby lots of shopping plazas. $$

Life in National City

The average commute time here is 26 minutes, which is a little less than the state's average. That's pretty good for a Southern California area, so maybe those traffic horror stories you hear don't apply to National City! Then again, it helps that more residents than average carpool in this city.

Plus, the percentages of people who walk to work, work from home, and use public transportation are higher than both the state and national average here. Your public transportation options include the San Diego Trolley, which can take you all around San Diego and its many suburbs. In particular, the Blue Line of the trolley serves this area. National City is also served by about 10 city bus routes and two Amtrak stations that are within a few miles of this area.

As for things to do in this city, shopping is a big one. Westfield Plaza Bonita is a mall with several department stores, eateries, and a movie theater. And have you ever heard of the Mile of Cars? No, that's not a nickname for rush hour in Southern California! It's the mile of new car dealerships lining National Blvd. -- with more than 20 dealerships to choose from, you should be able to find your dream car here, and you're going to need it as a resident of the sprawling San Diego area!

If you've been looking for affordable housing in the San Diego area and are about to give up on what seems like a pipe dream, make sure you take a look at National City before you leave. Remember that if it was good enough for the sequel to _Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, _it's probably good enough for most people.

Rent Report
National City

April 2018 National City Rent Report

Welcome to the April 2018 National City Rent Report. National City rents declined over the past month. In this report, we'll evaluate trends in the National City rental market, including comparisons to cities throughout the metro, state, and nation.

National City rents declined over the past month

National City rents have declined 0.1% over the past month, but are up significantly by 5.8% in comparison to the same time last year. Currently, median rents in National City stand at $1,170 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,510 for a two-bedroom. National City's year-over-year rent growth leads the state average of 2.9%, as well as the national average of 2.0%.

Rents rising across the San Diego Metro

Throughout the past year, rent increases have been occurring not just in the city of National City, but across the entire metro. Of the largest 10 cities that we have data for in the San Diego metro, all of them have seen prices rise. Here's a look at how rents compare across some of the largest cities in the metro.

  • El Cajon has seen the fastest rent growth in the metro, with a year-over-year increase of 7.1%. The median two-bedroom there costs $1,670, while one-bedrooms go for $1,290.
  • Over the past month, Encinitas has seen the biggest rent drop in the metro, with a decline of 1.6%. Median two-bedrooms there cost $2,390, while one-bedrooms go for $1,840.
  • Carlsbad has the most expensive rents of the largest cities in the San Diego metro, with a two-bedroom median of $2,400; rents went down 0.1% over the past month but rose 2.0% over the past year.
  • National City has the least expensive rents in the San Diego metro, with a two-bedroom median of $1,510; rents decreased 0.1% over the past month but were up 5.8% over the past year.

Many large cities nationwide show more affordable rents compared to National City

As rents have increased significantly in National City, a few large cities nationwide have seen rents grow more modestly. Compared to most large cities across the country, National City is less affordable for renters.

  • Rents increased significantly in other cities across the state, with California as a whole logging rent growth of 2.9% over the past year. For example, rents have grown by 3.1% in Los Angeles, 3.1% in San Jose, and 1.4% in San Francisco.
  • National City's median two-bedroom rent of $1,510 is above the national average of $1,170. Nationwide, rents have grown by 2.0% over the past year compared to the 5.8% rise in National City.
  • While National City's rents rose significantly over the past year, many cities nationwide also saw increases, including Phoenix (+2.9%), Denver (+1.9%), and Dallas (+1.8%).
  • Renters will generally find more expensive prices in National City than most large cities. For example, Phoenix has a median 2BR rent of $1,030, where National City is nearly one-and-a-half times that price.

For more information check out our national report. You can also access our full data for cities and counties across the U.S. at this link.
City Median 1BR price Median 2BR price M/M price change Y/Y price change
San Diego $1,550 $2,010 0.5% 2.8%
Chula Vista $1,620 $2,100 0.6% 4.3%
Oceanside $1,740 $2,260 -0.1% 3.7%
Escondido $1,400 $1,820 -0.2% 2.8%
Carlsbad $1,850 $2,400 -0.1% 2.0%
El Cajon $1,290 $1,670 0.6% 7.1%
Vista $1,410 $1,820 -0.1% 3.8%
San Marcos $1,510 $1,970 0.4% 3.8%
Encinitas $1,840 $2,390 -1.6% 3.1%
National City $1,170 $1,510 -0.1% 5.8%
See more

Methodology - Recent Updates:

Data from private listing sites, including our own, tends to skew toward luxury apartments, which introduces sample bias when estimates are calculated directly from these listings. To address these limitations, we’ve recently made major updates to our methodology, which we believe have greatly improved the accuracy and reliability of our estimates.

Read more about our new methodology below, or see a more detailed post here.


Apartment List is committed to making our rent estimates the best and most accurate available. To do this, we start with reliable median rent statistics from the Census Bureau, then extrapolate them forward to the current month using a growth rate calculated from our listing data. In doing so, we use a same-unit analysis similar to Case-Shiller’s approach, comparing only units that are available across both time periods to provide an accurate picture of rent growth in cities across the country.

Our approach corrects for the sample bias inherent in other private sources, producing results that are much closer to statistics published by the Census Bureau and HUD. Our methodology also allows us to construct a picture of rent growth over an extended period of time, with estimates that are updated each month.

Read more about our methodology here.

About Rent Reports:

Apartment List publishes monthly reports on rental trends for hundreds of cities across the U.S. We intend these reports to be a source of reliable information that help renters and policymakers make sound decisions, and we invest significant time and effort in gathering and analyzing rent data. Our work is covered regularly by journalists across the country.

We are continuously working to improve our methodology and data, with the goal of providing renters with the information that they need to make the best decisions.