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106 Apartments for rent in Madison, WI

Read Guide >
Last updated March 20 at 7:05am UTC
4414 Dwight Dr
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:01am UTC
1 Bedroom
406 Palomino Ln
Sunset Village
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
2 Bedrooms
2015 Sherman Ave
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
4 Bedrooms
401 Palomino Ln
Sunset Village
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
2 Bedrooms
2108 McKenna Blvd
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
3 Bedrooms
2906 Ashford Ln
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
3 Bedrooms
2027 Sherman Ave
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
3 Bedrooms
140 E Gorham St
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
3 Bedrooms
3319 Harvey St
Sunset Village
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
3319 Harvey St
Sunset Village
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:00am UTC
2 Bedrooms
3801 Regent St
Radio Park
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 1:59am UTC
209 Sunny Meade Ln
Capitol View Heights
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 1:56am UTC
2 Bedrooms
6308 Bettys Ln
Madison, WI
Updated March 20 at 2:01am UTC
4 Bedrooms
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City Guide
Renting in Madison

Taking an approach that borders on being almost too nice, Madtown’s rental scene (stocked with an abundance of affordable houses, apartments and shared living spaces for the college set) is run by agents—not apartment brokers—that operate with a focus on quality service. They make finding a sweet apartment so easy it makes Sunday mornings seem stressful.

More than a Score: A good credit score is as important as a financial consistency. Unlike many other cities, many rental agents and property management companies look at your payment patterns when they run your background check in order to get a sense of your financial behavior—not just your overall credit score.

References Matter: Not only will many landlords and property managers call your previous landlords, they’ll also call your employers to verify income (an offer letter is accepted for people moving to the area for a new job).

Sort of Totally Ideal: Application fees (around $50) are often returned if you’re declined. If you’re accepted, this fee will be put towards your first month’s rent. That’s basically the most awesome deal ever created since man started charging man for temporary inhabitance.

Location, Location, Location

Carved into an hourglass by Lake Mendota and Lake Monona—with Downtown running between them—the city’s East and West Sides are home to the majority of the student population and residential areas (not to mention significantly less traffic than Downtown).

East Side: Hip graduate students that migrate away from the University (particularly in Atwood/Willy) have made this area the hotspot for boutique shopping, co-ops, and an arty but easy-going bar scene. Expect: cute bungalows, lots of shared housing and a sprinkling of young families.

West Side: Home of the University of Wisconsin—Madison, the Westside is where all things college-related, like indie music venues, coffee shops, used book stores and co-eds, flourish. Overall the housing is—appropriately—geared toward students, so expect the associated shabbiness/ruckus. If you’re young, enjoy beer pong and/or don’t mind living with numerous other people inexpensively, call this side of Mad City your own. And whatever you do, make sure to check out the pocket of quirk that is Monroe (you can thank us for the tip later).

Isthmus/Downtown: Downtown, which looks homey yet cosmopolitan when viewed from across the lakes, is urban Madison. More crowded, stacked with modern condos featuring shimmering water views, sleek restaurants and a non-beer-centric nightlife help separate it from the rest of the city: this is where the grown-ups come to play and live. But since we’re in ma and pa country, even on this reed-thin slice of metropolitan glitz you can find plenty of dive bars, family-run eateries and the errant UW reveler.

The Minutiae of Madison

These details are the buttercream frosting on your insider-knowledge cake: enjoy responsibly.

The Seasons: You’ll hear this joke a lot in our town: “Madison has two seasons: winter and road construction.” And both of these “seasons” mean more traffic for you.

  • Well, road conditions are bad in a city you can’t entirely plow after a foot of overnight snowfall. It’s also hard to drive on ice. What can we say? The winters are cray-cray. We hope you like your shovel. Remember your chains. Salt your sidewalks. Don’t risk a wreck if you’re not absolutely positive you’re an ace in the frosty weather and good luck.
  • The two main drags through Downtown (East Johnson and Gorham) are both two-lane one-ways (running in opposite directions) and a nightmare during peak traffic hours (avoid!). The good news is you can take I-151 thru downtown to get from the East to West side (recommended). The bad news is they’re being resurfaced in 2014 (yay?). The so-so news is that they might be expanded into two-ways (we’ll see).

Convert Four Wheels to Two: You can blame the yucky road congestion, or the fact that the scenery is bonkers-beautiful EVERYWHERE, or the flat expanses, or the liberal atmosphere, but for whatever reason, Madison is a biker’s paradise with an inexhaustible number of trails. Join the movement to make friends, fit in, go green and get some exercise.

And remember: go Badgers!

Rent Report

March 2018 Madison Rent Report

Welcome to the March 2018 Madison Rent Report. Madison rents declined over the past month. In this report, we'll evaluate trends in the Madison rental market, including comparisons to similar cities nationwide.

Madison rents declined moderately over the past month

Madison rents have declined 0.3% over the past month, but are up slightly by 1.1% in comparison to the same time last year. Currently, median rents in Madison stand at $820 for a one-bedroom apartment and $990 for a two-bedroom. Madison's year-over-year rent growth leads the state average of 0.9%, but trails the national average of 2.3%.

Madison rents more affordable than many large cities nationwide

As rents have increased slightly in Madison, a few large cities nationwide have also seen rents grow modestly. Madison is still more affordable than most large cities across the country.

  • Madison's median two-bedroom rent of $990 is below the national average of $1,160. Nationwide, rents have grown by 2.3% over the past year compared to the 1.1% rise in Madison.
  • While Madison's rents rose slightly over the past year, many cities nationwide also saw increases, including Phoenix (+3.3%), Atlanta (+2.3%), and Seattle (+2.1%).
  • Renters will find more reasonable prices in Madison than most large cities. For example, San Francisco has a median 2BR rent of $3,040, which is more than three times the price in Madison.

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.


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.

Madison Renter Confidence Survey
National study of renter’s satisfaction with their cities and states
Here's how Madison ranks on:
A Overall satisfaction
A- Safety and crime rate
A Jobs and career opportunities
A Recreational activities
B Affordability
A- Quality of schools
A+ Social Life
D Weather
A+ Commute time
B+ State and local taxes
A- Public transit
A- Pet-friendliness
Best Worst
Full data available when viewing on a non-mobile device.
Overview of Findings

Apartment List has released Madison’s results from the third annual Apartment List Renter Satisfaction Survey. This survey, which drew on responses from over 45,000 renters, provides insight on what states and cities must do to meet the needs of 111 million American renters nationwide.

"Madison renters expressed general satisfaction with the city overall," according to Apartment List. "They gave most categories above average scores."

Key findings in Madison include the following:

  • Madison renters gave their city an A overall.
  • The highest-rated categories for Madison were commute time and social life, which both received A+ grades.
  • The areas of concern to Madison were weather (D) and affordability (B).
  • Millennial renters are very satisfied with their city, giving it an overall rating of A+.
  • Madison did relatively well compared to other cities in Wisconsin, including Milwaukee (B-).
  • Madison did relatively well compared to other Great Lakes cities, including Chicago, IL (B-), Cleveland, OH (C) and Detroit, MI (F).
  • Madison did relatively well compared to similar cities nationwide, including Los Angeles, CA (C+), New York, NY (C+) and Philadelphia, PA (C+).
  • The top rated cities nationwide for renter satisfaction include Scottsdale, AZ, Irvine, CA, Boulder, CO and Ann Arbor, MI. The lowest rated cities include Tallahassee, FL, Stockton, CA, Dayton, OH, Detroit, MI and Newark, NJ.

Renters say:

  • "Madison has excellent family friendly opportunities and wonderful museums. The college also offers affordable entertainment opportunities. I love the farmer’s market and Symphony on the Square in the summer." – Amanda
  • "Amazing town. So much to do and it’s so easy to make new friends." – Megan W.
  • "I love that Madison is a small town and a great place to raise a child. However, rent is very high and there’s a long waiting list for low-income assistance." – Brianna R.
  • "Having a college campus in the middle of a city is amazing. But Madison is not as racially inclusive as it thinks it is, which can be uncomfortable if you’re not white." – Savannah W.

For more information on the survey methodology and findings or to speak to one of our researchers, please contact our team at