Department of Numbers

Philadelphia Pennsylvania Residential Rent and Rental Statistics

The median monthly gross residential rent in Philadelphia, PA (the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington metro area) was $1,073 in 2016 according to the Census ACS survey.1 Average gross rent in Philadelphia was $1,108 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 Philadelphia median and average rent data will be released in September of 2018.

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

Show dollars as: Nominal Real

Real Gross Rent in Philadelphia Pennsylvania (2016 dollars)2

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US Median Gross Rent $981 +0.93% +7.80%
Pennsylvania Median Gross Rent $881 +0.23% +5.76%
Philadelphia, PA Median Gross Rent $1,073 -0.28% +6.98%

Philadelphia, PA Real Gross Rent Trends

Median gross rent for Philadelphia peaked in real terms in 2015 at $1,076 and is now $3 (0.28%) lower. At $1,108, real average gross rent in Philadelphia was at its highest level in 2016 since the series began in 2005.

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

Lower quartile, median and upper quartile real gross rent

Real Gross Rent History for Philadelphia

Date US
Median
Pennsylvania
Median
Philadelphia, PA
Median
Philadelphia, PA
Average
2016 $981 $881 $1,073 $1,108
2015 $972 $879 $1,076 $1,100
2014 $942 $855 $1,028 $1,068
2013 $910 $833 $1,003 $1,034
2012 $898 $811 $983 $1,015
2011 $898 $811 $987 $1,023
2010 $912 $814 $1,008 $1,033
2009 $916 $803 $993 $1,023
2008 $932 $821 $1,023 $1,046
2007 $885 $769 $972 $975
2006 $895 $779 $982 $982
2005 $869 $772 $960 $973

Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia Pennsylvania was 6.38% according to Census ACS data.

Rental Vacancy Rate in Philadelphia Pennsylvania

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 5.89% +0.04% -0.60%
Pennsylvania 5.77% 0.00% -0.01%
Philadelphia, PA 6.38% +0.15% -0.59%

Trends in Philadelphia, PA Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate in Philadelphia peaked in 2006 at 9.80%. Since then it has fallen by 3.42% to 6.38%. Data records for this series originated in 2005. From a 2015 post peak low of 6.23%, the rental vacancy rate has increased by 0.15%.

Rental Vacancy Rate: Philadelphia PA, Pennsylvania, US

Rental vacancy rate in Pennsylvania

Historical Rental Vacancy Rate data for Philadelphia

Date US Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA
2016 5.89% 5.77% 6.38%
2015 5.85% 5.77% 6.23%
2014 6.32% 6.40% 7.11%
2013 6.49% 5.78% 6.97%
2012 6.77% 5.88% 7.68%
2011 7.40% 6.13% 7.10%
2010 8.17% 6.47% 7.86%
2009 8.43% 6.80% 8.91%
2008 7.86% 6.65% 7.59%
2007 7.87% 7.34% 8.21%
2006 7.70% 8.09% 9.80%
2005 7.74% 7.94% 8.13%

Rent as a Fraction of Income

Using median household income data for Philadelphia, we can calculate the fraction of income the median household would use to pay rent at the median monthly gross rent rate. For Philadelphia, median monthly gross rent as a fraction of median household income was 19.51% in 2016 according to the ACS.

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

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 20.43% -0.20% -0.35%
Pennsylvania 18.58% -0.12% -0.53%
Philadelphia, PA 19.51% -0.06% -0.27%

Trends in Philadelphia, PA Rent as a Fraction of Income

The fraction of median Philadelphia household income required to pay median monthly gross rent peaked in 2013 (relative to the 2005 series origin) at 19.78%. Since then it has fallen by 0.27% to 19.51%.

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

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

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

Date US Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA
2016 20.43% 18.58% 19.51%
2015 20.63% 18.70% 19.57%
2014 20.89% 19.12% 19.69%
2013 20.78% 19.11% 19.78%
2012 20.65% 18.69% 19.33%
2011 20.70% 18.78% 19.69%
2010 20.50% 18.58% 19.52%
2009 20.12% 17.88% 18.22%
2008 19.00% 17.18% 17.81%
2007 18.66% 16.92% 17.82%
2006 18.90% 17.22% 18.07%
2005 18.89% 17.43% 18.02%

Renter Fraction in Philadelphia Pennsylvania

You can calculate the renter fraction in Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia as a fraction of total Philadelphia households. In 2016 33.37% of households were renters according to Census ACS data.

Philadelphia Fraction of Renters by Household Units

2016 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 36.88% -0.09% +0.38%
Pennsylvania 31.50% +0.22% +0.45%
Philadelphia, PA 33.37% +0.55% +0.26%

Trends in the Philadelphia, PA Renter Fraction

At 33.37%, the 2016 household based renter fraction in Philadelphia was at its highest level. The origin year for the series is 2005.

Fraction of Renting Households: Philadelphia PA, Pennsylvania, US

Fraction of renters in Philadelphia

History of Philadelphia Renter Fraction

Date US Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA
2016 36.88% 31.50% 33.37%
2015 36.97% 31.28% 32.82%
2014 36.90% 31.17% 33.03%
2013 36.50% 31.05% 33.11%
2012 36.09% 31.09% 32.50%
2011 35.42% 30.51% 32.06%
2010 34.65% 29.87% 31.38%
2009 34.13% 29.48% 30.43%
2008 33.36% 29.15% 30.23%
2007 32.80% 28.36% 29.46%
2006 32.73% 28.28% 29.00%
2005 33.10% 28.52% 29.93%

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.