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31 Apartments for rent in Santa Cruz, CA

Situated on the edge of Monterey Bay and known for its beach houses, boardwalk amusement park, laidback vibe and redwoods, Santa Cruz is certainly an appealing draw for beach bums,... Read Guide >
2323 Byer Rd
2323 Byer Road
Santa Cruz County, CA
Updated January 21 at 11:30am
4 Bedrooms
$5,000
6807 Cypress Gardens
6807 Cypress Gardens
Seacliff, CA
Updated January 21 at 11:29am
2 Bedrooms
$2,595
733 Seacliff Drive
733 Seacliff Drive
Seacliff, CA
Updated January 21 at 09:39am
1 Bedroom
$4,285
370 Bowen Ave
370 Bowen Avenue
Aptos, CA
Updated January 21 at 11:30am
2 Bedrooms
$3,200
828 Loma Prieta Dr
828 Loma Prieta Drive
Rio del Mar, CA
Updated January 21 at 11:30am
3 Bedrooms
$3,150
116 Hyannis Court
116 Hyannis Court
Rio del Mar, CA
Updated January 21 at 11:30am
2 Bedrooms
$2,195
9100 Ca 9
9100 Highway 9
Ben Lomond, CA
Updated January 21 at 08:04am
1 Bedroom
$1,100
14300 Long Ridge RD
14300 Long Ridge Road
Santa Cruz County, CA
Updated January 21 at 09:21pm
2 Bedrooms
$3,995
City GuideSanta Cruz
Situated on the edge of Monterey Bay and known for its beach houses, boardwalk amusement park, laidback vibe and redwoods, Santa Cruz is certainly an appealing draw for beach bums, hippies, and nature lovers looking to settle down. “Surf City”, as it’s known to some, is home to a college campus (UCSC, which is also the city’s largest employer) and has a youthful and very liberal vibe to it. Nope, there’s nothing conservative or buttoned-up about this seaside town. Expect to meet people from ...

Of course, there will be times when you need to head on in, rest your head and make yourself at home. Where you do that is entirely up to you, but here are some helpful tips to renting an apartment in él Santa Cruz.

Downtown

Downtown Santa Cruz is a hotspot for many reasons. The old Spanish architecture mixed with newly constructed apartments make for an eye-pleasing abode and the views of downtown, hillside and the beach are an added bonus. Living down here also means proximity to the highway, culture and history, UCSU campus and the beach. The tree-lined streets, public transit options and active neighborhood are added perks.

Beach

Another coveted area in Santa Cruz is, big surprise here, down by the beach. Nearby Lagoon (or the area close to Pacific Ave. and Depot Park) is sought after for its closeness to the wharf, boardwalk and beachy-keen way of life. Minutes from downtown, bursting with independently owned boutiques/shops and restaurants, residents relish their home in this ‘hood. Where else can you wake up and watch morning surfers with a cup of coffee in hand from the comfort of your very own home? The homes here are typically two to three bedrooms, often bungalows, but sometimes large two story dwellings. Apartments lovers here can choose between townhomes or basic apartments, featuring pet parks, picnic areas and sometimes even a picket fence.

West Side

The areas of Seabright Ave. and the west side (near the beach and the highway) are also great options. Featuring bungalows, good schools and walkability to entertainment, these areas are bit more single-family home than apartment living but are excellent choices.

One last mention about surfing

No matter where you choose to hang your surfboard in this city (there ya' go), odds are you will be very happy you did. The residents are as go-with-the-flow as the weather and the living is easy. Good luck finding your own inner-cool (and your new home) in Santa Cruz.

January 2019 Santa Cruz Rent Report

Welcome to the January 2019 Santa Cruz Rent Report. Santa Cruz rents declined over the past month. In this report, we'll evaluate trends in the Santa Cruz rental market, including comparisons to cities throughout the state and nation.

View full Rent Report

January 2019 Santa Cruz Rent Report

Welcome to the January 2019 Santa Cruz Rent Report. Santa Cruz rents declined over the past month. In this report, we'll evaluate trends in the Santa Cruz rental market, including comparisons to cities throughout the state and nation.

Santa Cruz rents decline sharply over the past month

Santa Cruz rents have declined 2.2% over the past month, but are up marginally by 0.6% in comparison to the same time last year. Currently, median rents in Santa Cruz stand at $1,830 for a one-bedroom apartment and $2,430 for a two-bedroom. Santa Cruz's year-over-year rent growth leads the state average of 0.3%, but trails the national average of 0.9%.

    Rents rising across cities in California

    Throughout the past year, rent increases have been occurring not just in the city of Santa Cruz, but across the entire state. Of the largest 10 cities that we have data for in California, all of them have seen prices rise. The state as a whole logged rent growth of 0.3% over the past year. Here's a look at how rents compare across some of the largest cities in the state.

    • Looking throughout the state, San Francisco is the most expensive of all California's major cities, with a median two-bedroom rent of $3,090; of the 10 largest California cities that we have data for, all have seen rents rise year-over-year, with San Jose experiencing the fastest growth (+3.7%).
    • Oakland, San Francisco, and Sacramento have all experienced year-over-year growth above the state average (3.1%, 2.4%, and 2.2%, respectively).

    Many large cities nationwide show more affordable rents compared to Santa Cruz

    As rents have increased marginally in Santa Cruz, a few large cities nationwide have also seen rents grow modestly. Compared to most large cities across the country, Santa Cruz is less affordable for renters.

    • Santa Cruz's median two-bedroom rent of $2,430 is above the national average of $1,180. Nationwide, rents have grown by 0.9% over the past year compared to the 0.6% rise in Santa Cruz.
    • While Santa Cruz's rents rose marginally over the past year, many cities nationwide also saw increases, including Phoenix (+3.3%), New York (+2.7%), and Denver (+2.5%).
    • Renters will generally find more expensive prices in Santa Cruz than most large cities. For example, Detroit has a median 2BR rent of $900, where Santa Cruz is more than two-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.

    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.

    Methodology:

    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.