Department of Numbers

Lancaster Pennsylvania Residential Rent and Rental Statistics

The median monthly gross residential rent in Lancaster, PA (the Lancaster metro area) was $941 in 2015 according to the Census ACS survey.1 Average gross rent in Lancaster was $971 in 2015. The median rent more accurately depicts rental rates in the middle of the distribution of rents and is thus preferred in the analysis below. 2016 Lancaster median and average rent data will be released in September of 2017.

Data is also available below for Lancaster rental vacancy rates, Lancaster rent as a percent of median income and the fraction of renters in Lancaster.

Show dollars as: Nominal Real

Real Gross Rent in Lancaster Pennsylvania (2015 dollars)2

2015 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US Median Gross Rent $959 +3.12% +8.24%
Pennsylvania Median Gross Rent $868 +2.84% +8.50%
Lancaster, PA Median Gross Rent $941 +5.73% +7.05%

Lancaster, PA Real Gross Rent Trends

At $941, real median gross rent in Lancaster was at its highest level in 2015 since the series began in 2005. At $971, real average gross rent in Lancaster was at its highest level in 2015 since the series began in 2005.

Real Gross Rent in Lancaster: Lancaster PA Median, Lancaster PA Average, Pennsylvania Median, US Median

Lower quartile, median and upper quartile real gross rent

Real Gross Rent History for Lancaster

Date US
Median
Pennsylvania
Median
Lancaster, PA
Median
Lancaster, PA
Average
2015 $959 $868 $941 $971
2014 $930 $844 $890 $906
2013 $898 $822 $889 $906
2012 $886 $800 $879 $917
2011 $887 $800 $849 $879
2010 $901 $804 $866 $879
2009 $905 $793 $837 $870
2008 $920 $811 $878 $922
2007 $874 $759 $804 $804
2006 $883 $769 $823 $839
2005 $858 $762 $836 $816

Lancaster Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate is the fraction of homes for rent that are not occupied.3 In 2015 the rental vacancy rate for Lancaster Pennsylvania was 3.34% according to Census ACS data.

Rental Vacancy Rate in Lancaster Pennsylvania

2015 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 5.85% -0.47% -0.92%
Pennsylvania 5.77% -0.63% -0.11%
Lancaster, PA 3.34% -1.97% -0.39%

Trends in Lancaster, PA Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate in Lancaster peaked in 2014 at 5.31%. Since then it has fallen by 1.97% to 3.34%. Data records for this series originated in 2005.

Rental Vacancy Rate: Lancaster PA, Pennsylvania, US

Rental vacancy rate in Pennsylvania

Historical Rental Vacancy Rate data for Lancaster

Date US Pennsylvania Lancaster, PA
2015 5.85% 5.77% 3.34%
2014 6.32% 6.40% 5.31%
2013 6.49% 5.78% 5.04%
2012 6.77% 5.88% 3.73%
2011 7.40% 6.13% 3.89%
2010 8.17% 6.47% 4.29%
2009 8.43% 6.80% 3.52%
2008 7.86% 6.65% 4.34%
2007 7.87% 7.34% 4.61%
2006 7.70% 8.09% 4.13%
2005 7.74% 7.94% 3.58%

Rent as a Fraction of Income

Using median household income data for Lancaster, we can calculate the fraction of income the median household would use to pay rent at the median monthly gross rent rate. For Lancaster, median monthly gross rent as a fraction of median household income was 19.05% in 2015 according to the ACS.

Lancaster Pennsylvania Median Annual Rent as a Fraction of Median Household Income

2015 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 20.63% -0.26% -0.02%
Pennsylvania 18.70% -0.42% +0.01%
Lancaster, PA 19.05% +0.37% -0.16%

Trends in Lancaster, PA Rent as a Fraction of Income

The fraction of median Lancaster household income required to pay median monthly gross rent peaked in 2012 (relative to the 2005 series origin) at 19.21%. Since then it has fallen by 0.16% to 19.05%.

Fraction of Income towards Rent: Lancaster PA, Pennsylvania, US

Percent of median household income going towards median monthly gross rent in Lancaster Pennsylvania

Historical Data for Annual Rent as a Fraction of Income in Lancaster Pennsylvania

Date US Pennsylvania Lancaster, PA
2015 20.63% 18.70% 19.05%
2014 20.89% 19.12% 18.69%
2013 20.78% 19.11% 18.89%
2012 20.65% 18.69% 19.21%
2011 20.70% 18.78% 18.75%
2010 20.50% 18.58% 19.06%
2009 20.12% 17.88% 16.79%
2008 19.00% 17.18% 16.89%
2007 18.66% 16.92% 16.51%
2006 18.90% 17.22% 16.39%
2005 18.89% 17.43% 17.26%

Renter Fraction in Lancaster Pennsylvania

You can calculate the renter fraction in Lancaster in at least two ways: by housing units or by population. I've gone with the housing units measure here. This measure looks at the number of renting households in Lancaster as a fraction of total Lancaster households. In 2015 32.61% of households were renters according to Census ACS data.

Lancaster Fraction of Renters by Household Units

2015 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 36.97% +0.07% +0.88%
Pennsylvania 31.28% +0.11% +0.19%
Lancaster, PA 32.61% +0.38% +1.66%

Trends in the Lancaster, PA Renter Fraction

At 32.61%, the 2015 household based renter fraction in Lancaster was at its highest level. The origin year for the series is 2005.

Fraction of Renting Households: Lancaster PA, Pennsylvania, US

Fraction of renters in Lancaster

History of Lancaster Renter Fraction

Date US Pennsylvania Lancaster, PA
2015 36.97% 31.28% 32.61%
2014 36.90% 31.17% 32.23%
2013 36.50% 31.05% 31.41%
2012 36.09% 31.09% 30.95%
2011 35.42% 30.51% 30.00%
2010 34.65% 29.87% 30.44%
2009 34.13% 29.48% 30.24%
2008 33.36% 29.15% 29.40%
2007 32.80% 28.36% 29.36%
2006 32.73% 28.28% 29.29%
2005 33.10% 28.52% 30.43%

1. Gross rent is defined as contract rent plus the estimated average monthly cost of utilities (electricity, gas, water, and sewer) and fuel (oil, coal, kerosene, wood, etc.). Because some rentals include utilities and others don't, gross rent is a way of normalizing the variability.

2. Real dollars are calculated using the CPI-U less shelter series.

3. The rental vacancy rate is computed by dividing the number of vacant units for rent by the sum of the renter-occupied units, vacant units that are for rent, and vacant units that have been rented but not yet occupied.