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1091 Apartments for rent in Philadelphia, PA

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Last updated November 23 at 10:32am UTC
Alden Park
5500 Wissahickon Ave
Philadelphia, PA
Updated November 23 at 8:44am UTC
Studio
$775
1 Bedroom
$1,050
2 Bedrooms
$1,530
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City Guide
Philadelphia
The Lay of the Land

When Philadelphia was designed by William Penn (Putting the “Penn” in Penn-sylvania) way back in the 1600s, he set it up as a grid with one green square –basically, a mini-park– smack dab in the middle, with other green squares in each corner.

Those squares still exist today, and that grid, set between the Delaware River to the east and the Schuylkill River to the west, still makes up Philadelphia’s downtown, aka “Center City.”

But as more and more people have made their home in Center City, we’ve had to gently shove some of them past the traditional boundaries, which means even the once-dicey “fringe neighborhoods” just beyond the grid are now perfectly livable.

Rule(s) of Thumb

The farther you go from Center City, the lower the rent, thanks to the No. 1 real estate rule: location, location, location.

Center City is generally more expensive because that’s where we keep the shiny, high-rise towers, doormen, fitness centers and parking garages. Mixed in between are the low-rise apartment buildings and rowhomes/brownstones/townhouses-turned apartments. While these building names are essentially interchangeable, it should be noted that Philadelphians usually think of “rowhomes” as the ones in the inexpensive ’hoods, whereas “brownstones” or “townhouses” reside in the ritzier areas. As per usual, the rates for townhomes and brownstones drop the further you get away from the city’s center.

By contrast, smaller buildings and street parking dominate the surrounding neighborhoods. So if you’re coming with a car in tow, you might want to consider the benefits of convenient parking.

Center City

Of course, since we love our neighborhoods, even Center City is broken up into smaller chunks:

Rittenhouse Square: Hey there, moneybags. A Rittenhouse address is the most coveted around. Here’s where you’ll rub elbows with the city’s elite as they browse high-end shops and grab lunch at outdoor cafés overlooking Rittenhouse Square, one of the five original parks. Don’t expect to find a decent studio for less than $1,000, or a tolerable one-bedroom for under $1,300. And with those prices, you can forget about included amenities, like central air or free laundry facilities. But, if your job has you raking in the dough and price is no factor, then consider giving this area a chance.

Washington Square West: Using another square as a landmark, “Wash West” is a step in the younger and less expensive direction. There’s no shortage of bars and restaurants here, many of them catering to the gay crowd and clustered in a section called the “Gayborhood”. You can’t miss it: just look for the iconic rainbow flags on the street signs.

Old City/Society Hill: Touted as “America’s most historic square mile,” Old City is where you’ll find the Liberty Bell; Independence Hall, where the Constitution was written; the Betsy Ross House; Ben Franklin’s grave; Elfreth’s Alley, the oldest continuously inhabited street in the country; and, especially in the summer, way too many tourists. The neighborhood also has a dense concentration of restaurants, bars, and inebriated 20-somethings (a plus or a minus? You decide). Society Hill is Old City’s more-residential sister, filled with Colonial-style brick townhouses, quaint courtyards and cobblestone streets. Rents around here rival Rittenhouse, but you’ll get more space for the money.

Life on the Fringe: North of Center City

Northern Liberties/Fishtown: Consider yourself a hipster? Ride a fixie to your job at a coffee shop/dive bar/tattoo parlor? Create sculptures out of trash in your spare time? You’ve found your ’hood. Northern Liberties is the area immediately north of Old City; Fishtown is the next stop over. Northern Liberties, especially, is slowly being gentrified, with new homes and apartments sprouting up. That means there’s now a huge range of rents, depending on if you’re looking for a small space in an older rowhome, or a swanky, artist-style loft. Just remember that if one place doesn’t suit your budget, another a few blocks down probably will.

Art Museum: At the northwestern edge of Center City is the Art Museum neighborhood, where the appropriately located Philadelphia Museum of Art resides. Set on the other side of the wide boulevard known as Benjamin Franklin Parkway, this area feels slightly removed from downtown. Quieter, narrower streets and lower rents are typical fare around here, perfect for someone looking for someplace a bit quieter. People do, however, tend to use the word “funky” when describing this neighborhood, so keep that in mind if you shy away from the Bohemian-type.

To the South we Have

Graduate Hospital: Also known as “South of South,” “Southwest Center City,” or sometimes -- don’t worry, we’re trying to put a stop to this -- “G-Ho,” Grad Hospital is what the polite folk call an “up-and-coming neighborhood.” There’s an optimistic blend of brand-spanking-new townhouses; slightly larger properties, each being converted into two or three upscale apartments; and run-down fixer-uppers being bought by young professionals who want to be near their jobs in Center City. Add an abundance of students living in the places that haven’t been rehabbed yet to that mix, and you’ve got a pretty good image of what to expect when moving out here.

Bella Vista/Queen Village: These classy next-door neighborhoods just east of Grad Hospital are pretty hard to tell apart, with one exception: Queen Village gentrified a little earlier, so it’s a bit more expensive. Both have a settled in feel, especially compared to the other neighborhoods. A lot of the homes here, whether for one family (more common) or broken up into apartments, are old. Like, 18th-century old.

Westward Ho

University City: Just west of the Schuylkill River, Center City’s western boundary, is West Philly. The section of West Philly closest to Center City is called University City. If you haven’t figured out the elaborate naming system yet, it’s where the universities are. Surprising, right? Here, you’ll find a mix of students, professors, hippies and, of course, hipsters. Normally, you’ll find them all heading to the park to check out the farmers market and play Frisbee, so consider joining in if that’s your scene. The properties catering to students/closest to the colleges are typically pricy, but you’ll be able to find plenty of affordable options carved out of rambling old Victorian homes. In fact, the low-cost apartments here are among the most inexpensive in the city: One-bedrooms start as low as $600.

Insider Tip: Getting around

It’s a good thing Philly is a very walkable city, because parking is a pain and the public transit system is spotty at best. It’s not as if you can’t get anywhere using SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority), it’s just that it’s not always convenient. If you’re someone who plans your day out to the minute, you might want to give yourself a pretty big window, just in case. There are two fast subway lines, one north-south and the other east-west, and many, many slow buses and trolleys. It’s always good to make sure you have available transportation options before signing a lease, but we recommend you double check. And don’t even bother planning to catch a free ride for just a stop or two on one of the suburban trains that pass through the city. The conductors are on to that trick, and they’ll embarrass you in front of the whole car. Um, not that we’d know.

Now that you've gotten a taste, go out and find yourself that perfect pad. This historic city is just waiting for you to make your mark, so go out and do it already! Happy hunting!

Rent Report
Philadelphia

November 2017 Philadelphia Rent Report

Welcome to the November 2017 Philadelphia Rent Report. Philadelphia rents declined over the past month. In this report, we'll evaluate trends in the Philadelphia rental market, including comparisons to similar cities nationwide.

Philadelphia rents declined significantly over the past month

Philadelphia rents have declined 0.5% over the past month, but have increased marginally by 0.5% in comparison to the same time last year. Currently, median rents in Philadelphia stand at $960 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,160 for a two-bedroom. Philadelphia's year-over-year rent growth lags the state average of 1.2%, as well as the national average of 2.7%.

Philadelphia rents more affordable than many other large cities nationwide

As rents have increased in Philadelphia, other large cities nationwide have seen rents grow more modestly, or in some cases, even decline. Philadelphia is still more affordable than most comparable cities across the country.

  • Philadelphia's median two-bedroom rent of $1,160 is equal to the national average of $1,160. Nationwide, rents have grown by 2.7% over the past year compared to the 0.5% increase in Philadelphia.
  • While Philadelphia's rents rose over the past year, many cities nationwide saw decreases, including DC (-0.6%), New York (-0.2%), and Miami (-0.2%).
  • Renters will find more reasonable prices in Philadelphia than most similar cities. For example, San Francisco has a median 2BR rent of $3,070, which is more than two-and-a-half times the price in Philadelphia.

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.

Philadelphia Renter Confidence Survey
National study of renter confidence in the economy, homeownership, and cities
Here's how Philadelphia ranks on:
B Overall satisfaction
C Safety and crime rate
B+ Jobs and career opportunities
A- Recreational activities
B- Affordability
F Quality of schools
C+ Weather
B+ Commute time
C- State and local taxes
A+ Public transit
B Pet-friendliness
Best Worst
Full data available when viewing on a non-mobile device.
Overview of Findings

Apartment List has released results for Philadelphia from the second annual Apartment List Renter Satisfaction Survey. The survey, which drew on responses from over 30,000 renters, provides insight into what states and cities must do to meet the needs of the 105 million American renters nationwide.

“Renters in Philadelphia are relatively satisfied with their city overall,” says Andrew Woo, Director of Data Science at Apartment List. “They gave average or above average scores in many categories, though they would like to see some changes in others.”

Key findings in Philadelphia include the following:

  • Philadelphia renters gave their city a B overall for satisfaction.
  • The highest-rated categories for Philadelphia were access to public transit (A+) and access to parks (A-).
  • Other well-rated categories included local jobs and career opportunities (B+), commute times (B+), and affordability/cost of living (B-).
  • Some causes of dissatisfaction for Philadelphia renters include safety (C) and quality of local schools (F).
  • Millennial renters seem to be especially satisfied with life in Philadelphia, with this specific group giving the city an A- overall.
  • Philadelphia renter satisfaction is relatively on par with other similarly sized cities like New York (B). Renters here are relatively less satisfied than renters in other major East Coast cities like Boston (A+) and Washington DC (A-).
  • The top rated cities nationwide for renter satisfaction included Arlington, VA; Lincoln, NE; Pasadena, CA; Boston, MA; and Madison, WI. The lowest rated cities included Newark, NJ; Bronx, NY; Bridgeport, CT; Baltimore, MD; and Salinas, CA.

Renters say:

  • “Philly is super affordable with a lot of valuable opportunities and a rich culture. It has a thriving gay community in Center City, and a very diverse, peaceful, and artsy area in West Philly, though neighborhoods around the city have their own strengths. The food culture is unsurpassed.” —Jessi
  • “I like that it's still very close to a major metro, while still close to forests and suburbs. It also has pretty good access to public transit.” —Evan E.
  • “Love the city, but it's incredibly expensive to rent a place here. The only places with decent rent are in bad neighborhoods. It's also impossible to find a place with a washer and dryer. The city wage tax is also a huge reason as to why I'd like to move.” —Katie S.
  • “Love the history, diversity of population, cultural aspects. Hate the crime, grime and litter. Much could be done to improve/update the ancient, filthy subway stations and downtown rail station.” —Susan