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Best Cities for Renters

By: Andrew Woo
July 14, 2015

Ten cities out of 100 were given A+ grades by renters for city satisfaction, according to results recently released in Apartment List’s Renter Confidence Survey. The top cities overall were Plano, TX; Boston, MA; and Arlington, VA.

Apartment List’s study evaluates cities nationwide across multiple metrics to determine where renters are most satisfied, as well as what key factors drive satisfaction. For example, renters were asked if they felt the city’s economy was on the right track, how they felt about local crime and safety, or how likely they were to recommend the city to friends and family.

At the bottom of the list were Newark, NJ; New Haven, CT; and Bridgeport, CT, which each received F grades for renter city satisfaction. Newark renters gave it a D for schools and F grades for safety and the economy.

For more details, visit our survey page, or look at the full rankings for the 100 cities below.

RankCityCity satisfactionConfidence in the local economyPlans for homeownershipSafety and crime rateAccess to recreational activitiesQuality of schoolsSatisfaction with daily commuteState and local taxes
1Plano, TXA+A+C+A+A+A+B+A+
2Boston, MAA+A+A-A-A+C-A+F
3Arlington, VAA+A+A+A+A+A-A+A-
4Austin, TXA+A-A+A-CB+A-B+
5Torrance, CAA+B+B-AAB+A-B+
6San Francisco, CAA+ABA-A+A-A-F
7Washington, DCA+AAC+ADAC+
8Grand Rapids, MIA+A+AB+C-BC+C-
9Orlando, FLA+B+A-B+BA-B+A+
10Minneapolis, MNA+A+A-AA+AAB

ApartmentList.com surveyed 18,675 renters across the United States.  The survey asked questions about renter plans for homeownership and satisfaction with cities such as:Survey Methodology

  • On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend your current city or neighborhood to a friend or family member, with 1 being extremely unlikely and 10 being extremely likely?
  • In the future, which of the following is closest to your plans?  [I expect to always rent. / I plan to eventually buy a house or apartment. / I’m unsure.]
  • Do you feel that your local economy is on the right track?

Apartment List then evaluated cities and states against one another along multiple metrics.  A detailed report explaining the survey’s methodology is available here.

About Apartment List

Apartment List is the fastest-growing apartment rental marketplace in the United States, and is reinventing the rental market on a foundation of trust and transparency. Headquartered in San Francisco, Apartment List was recently named the #3 fastest growing company in the Bay Area and raised capital from an incredible team of investors led by Matrix Partners.

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Andrew is the former Director of Data Science at Apartment List, where he lead research into rental trends and affordability. Andrew previously worked as a management consultant at Bain & Company, and has a BA in Economics from Brigham Young University. Read More
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