Department of Numbers

Denver Colorado Residential Rent and Rental Statistics

The median monthly gross residential rent in Denver, CO (the Denver-Aurora-Broomfield metro area) was $1,286 in 2016 according to the Census ACS survey.1 Average gross rent in Denver was $1,294 in 2016. The median rent more accurately depicts rental rates in the middle of the distribution of rents and is thus preferred in the analysis below. 2017 Denver median and average rent data will be released in September of 2018.

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

Show dollars as: Nominal Real

Real Gross Rent in Denver Colorado (2016 dollars)2

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US Median Gross Rent $981 +0.93% +7.80%
Colorado Median Gross Rent $1,171 +4.00% +19.86%
Denver, CO Median Gross Rent $1,286 +7.17% +28.09%

Denver, CO Real Gross Rent Trends

At $1,286, real median gross rent in Denver was at its highest level in 2016 since the series began in 2005. At $1,294, real average gross rent in Denver was at its highest level in 2016 since the series began in 2005.

Real Gross Rent in Denver: Denver CO Median, Denver CO Average, Colorado Median, US Median

Lower quartile, median and upper quartile real gross rent

Real Gross Rent History for Denver

Date US
Median
Colorado
Median
Denver, CO
Median
Denver, CO
Average
2016 $981 $1,171 $1,286 $1,294
2015 $972 $1,126 $1,200 $1,242
2014 $942 $1,028 $1,087 $1,125
2013 $910 $977 $1,004 $1,065
2012 $898 $949 $976 $1,032
2011 $898 $928 $949 $1,013
2010 $912 $921 $938 $1,011
2009 $916 $926 $953 $1,019
2008 $932 $959 $986 $1,029
2007 $885 $884 $900 $963
2006 $895 $915 $940 $982
2005 $869 $904 $928 $984

Denver Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate is the fraction of homes for rent that are not occupied.3 In 2016 the rental vacancy rate for Denver Colorado was 3.61% according to Census ACS data.

Rental Vacancy Rate in Denver Colorado

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 5.89% +0.04% -0.60%
Colorado 4.29% -0.18% -0.97%
Denver, CO 3.61% +0.20% -0.39%

Trends in Denver, CO Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate in Denver peaked in 2005 at 9.70%. Since then it has fallen by 6.09% to 3.61%. Data records for this series originated in 2005. From a 2015 post peak low of 3.41%, the rental vacancy rate has increased by 0.20%.

Rental Vacancy Rate: Denver CO, Colorado, US

Rental vacancy rate in Colorado

Historical Rental Vacancy Rate data for Denver

Date US Colorado Denver, CO
2016 5.89% 4.29% 3.61%
2015 5.85% 4.47% 3.41%
2014 6.32% 4.85% 3.97%
2013 6.49% 5.26% 4.00%
2012 6.77% 5.69% 4.94%
2011 7.40% 5.63% 5.10%
2010 8.17% 6.72% 6.47%
2009 8.43% 8.00% 7.75%
2008 7.86% 7.45% 7.19%
2007 7.87% 8.63% 8.40%
2006 7.70% 8.36% 7.56%
2005 7.74% 9.35% 9.70%

Rent as a Fraction of Income

Using median household income data for Denver, we can calculate the fraction of income the median household would use to pay rent at the median monthly gross rent rate. For Denver, median monthly gross rent as a fraction of median household income was 21.46% in 2016 according to the ACS.

Denver Colorado Median Annual Rent as a Fraction of Median Household Income

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 20.43% -0.20% -0.35%
Colorado 21.39% +0.53% +1.58%
Denver, CO 21.46% +1.24% +2.37%

Trends in Denver, CO Rent as a Fraction of Income

Denver renters paid 21.46% of median household income towards the median monthly gross rent in 2016. This is the highest fraction of median household income going to rent since the series originated in 2005.

Fraction of Income towards Rent: Denver CO, Colorado, US

Percent of median household income going towards median monthly gross rent in Denver Colorado

Historical Data for Annual Rent as a Fraction of Income in Denver Colorado

Date US Colorado Denver, CO
2016 20.43% 21.39% 21.46%
2015 20.63% 20.86% 20.22%
2014 20.89% 19.97% 19.34%
2013 20.78% 19.81% 19.08%
2012 20.65% 19.74% 18.77%
2011 20.70% 19.50% 18.64%
2010 20.50% 19.16% 17.96%
2009 20.12% 18.42% 17.81%
2008 19.00% 17.85% 17.34%
2007 18.66% 17.13% 16.35%
2006 18.90% 17.99% 17.50%
2005 18.89% 17.93% 16.98%

Renter Fraction in Denver Colorado

You can calculate the renter fraction in Denver 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 Denver as a fraction of total Denver households. In 2016 36.21% of households were renters according to Census ACS data.

Denver Fraction of Renters by Household Units

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 36.88% -0.09% +0.38%
Colorado 35.24% -1.01% -0.25%
Denver, CO 36.21% -0.85% -0.31%

Trends in the Denver, CO Renter Fraction

The Denver household renter fraction peaked in in 2014 at 37.68% and is now 1.47% below that level. The origin year for the series is 2005.

Fraction of Renting Households: Denver CO, Colorado, US

Fraction of renters in Denver

History of Denver Renter Fraction

Date US Colorado Denver, CO
2016 36.88% 35.24% 36.21%
2015 36.97% 36.25% 37.06%
2014 36.90% 36.14% 37.68%
2013 36.50% 35.49% 36.52%
2012 36.09% 35.97% 37.58%
2011 35.42% 35.62% 37.03%
2010 34.65% 34.06% 35.21%
2009 34.13% 32.99% 34.40%
2008 33.36% 32.51% 32.70%
2007 32.80% 31.17% 31.80%
2006 32.73% 31.27% 31.68%
2005 33.10% 32.18% 32.17%

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.