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In May, the national median monthly rent was $1,404, down almost 1% from same month last year, according to a June Apartment List report.

Rent costs across U.S. continue to fluctuate, but there are some major areas where prices are trending up year-over-year.

CNBC Make It analyzed rent estimate data from Apartment List for April 2023 to April 2024, filtering metropolitan statistical areas, as defined by the Census Bureau, by those with at least 500,000 residents to find the metros in the west with the biggest rent increases for a one-bedroom apartment.

California is the only state with two metro areas in the top five. The Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Venture and Stockton, California metros ranked in the No. 4 and No. 5 spots, respectively.

Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, part of the Greater Los Angeles area, had a 1.4% increase in the price of rent for 1-bedroom apartments — from $1,934 in 2023 to $1,961 in 2024.

The rise in rent for one-bedroom apartments in California’s Stockton metro area was similar, going from $1,161 in 2023 to $1,175 in 2024 — a 1.2% increase.

It is important to note that the Census Bureau defines the Albuquerque, New Mexico metro area to be part of the core-based statistical area of Albuquerque-Santa-Fe-Las Vegas, New Mexico combined statistical area, falling under the southwest and western regions of the United States.

Despite the nationwide median rent trending down year-over-year, the following metro areas in the western U.S. have seen the highest increases in rent for 1-bedroom apartments, similar to several areas in the Northeast. This indicates that there are still places in the country where prices continue to rise.

Honolulu, Hawaii is the western metro area where 1-bedroom rent has gone up the most year-over-year

Honolulu ranked as the western metro area with the biggest rent increase for 1-bedroom apartments in year. Rent in the state went up by 3.3% from $1,783 in 2023 to $1,841 in 2024.

That’s up 18.9% from April 2019, when the average rent was $1,548.

Honolulu, Hawaii

Art Wager | E+ | Getty Images

Hawaii has been one of the most expensive states to live in for years, according to CNBC’s America’s Top States for Business study. It ranked that highly based on an index of prices for a range of goods and services.

The cost of living in Hawaii is high because of a number of factors, including that so many items on the island are imported. Gas prices in the state are among the nation’s highest, according to that CNBC study.

Honolulu, Hawaii’s capital city, has about 80% of the state’s population, according to Britannica.

5 metros in the west with the biggest rent increases for a 1-bedroom in one year

  1. Honolulu, Hawaii
  2. Albuquerque, New Mexico
  3. Seattle-Bellevue-Tacoma, Wash.
  4. Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Venture, Calif.
  5. Stockton, Calif.

Albuquerque is the No. 2 metro in the west with the biggest rent increase for 1-bedroom apartments.

Rent for 1-bedroom apartments in the area increased by 1.8% from April 2023 to April 2024 — the average rent went from $949 to $966. Overall, rent went up 49.5% from 2019 to 2024.

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Daniel A. Leifheit | Moment | Getty Images

Albuquerque is the largest city in New Mexico and the state’s economic capital, according to Britannica. It is about 60 miles away from the state’s capital of Sante Fe.

Albuquerque, New Mexico’s cost of living is 7% lower than the national average, according to PayScale.

The city’s housing expenses are also 12% lower than the national average and the utility prices are 8% lower than the national average. 

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