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What’s the best time of year to rent in Philly?

A new report finds the cheapest and most expensive months to rent

Looking to rent in Philly? Try to sign a lease in the winter to save some money.
Courtesy of Helen89/Shutterstock.com

Here’s a helpful money hack for Philly renters: Sign a lease in the winter to save up to $60 in monthly rent.

According to a new Renthop report, December is the best (i.e. cheapest) month to rent a two-bedroom apartment in Philly, while February is prime time to rent a one-bedroom unit.

In Philly, apartment website Renthop found that in February, one-bedroom rentals hover around $1,100 a month. Compare that to May, which is the worst (i.e. most expensive) month to rent and can cost on average $1,153 a month.

For two-bedrooms, December rents are around $1,500. Again, in May, that number rises to $1,560.

“In Philadelphia, you’re looking at roughly 4.6 percent and 3.8 percent peak-to-trough seasonal differences for one and two-bedroom units, respectively,” the researchers wrote. For the report, Renthop used approximate 2017 median pricing for apartments in 10 major U.S. cities, not current snapshots of rental prices.

What’s at play here? Just like the housing market, the rental market can be very seasonal. The researchers found a slight correlation between weather and rent variations, finding that cold weather during December through February may be keeping people from venturing outside to go apartment hunting.

Philly’s large student population is a small, but noteworthy factor, too. The cyclical nature of students moving in and out of their apartments in May happens to occur during Philly’s peak rent months.

Lesson learned: If you’re on the hunt for a new apartment, try to get on a winter lease.