Department of Numbers

Harris County Texas Residential Rent and Rental Statistics

The median monthly gross residential rent in Harris County TX was $1,011 in 2017 according to the Census ACS survey.1 Average gross rent in Harris County was $1,068 in 2017. The median rent more accurately depicts rental rates in the middle of the distribution of rents and is thus preferred in the analysis below. 2018 Harris County median and average rent data will be released in September of 2019.

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

Show dollars as: Nominal Real

Real Gross Rent in Harris County Texas (2017 dollars)2

2017 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US Median Gross Rent $1,012 +1.61% +5.86%
Texas Median Gross Rent $987 +1.65% +7.63%
Harris County TX Median Gross Rent $1,011 +0.20% +7.21%

Harris County TX Real Gross Rent Trends

At $1,011, real median gross rent in Harris County was at its highest level in 2017 since the series began in 2005. Average gross rent for Harris County peaked in real terms in 2016 at $1,082 and is now $14 (1.29%) lower.

Real Gross Rent: Harris County TX Median, Harris County TX Average, Texas Median, US Median

Lower quartile, median and upper quartile real gross rent

Real Gross Rent History for Harris County

Date US
Median
Texas
Median
Harris County TX
Median
Harris County TX
Average
2017 $1,012 $987 $1,011 $1,068
2016 $996 $971 $1,009 $1,082
2015 $987 $959 $986 $1,062
2014 $956 $917 $943 $1,012
2013 $924 $875 $891 $950
2012 $912 $857 $883 $941
2011 $912 $852 $881 $942
2010 $927 $868 $904 $960
2009 $931 $871 $926 $983
2008 $947 $882 $913 $960
2007 $899 $836 $875 $923
2006 $909 $847 $887 $917

Harris County Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate is the fraction of homes for rent that are not occupied.3 In 2017 the rental vacancy rate for Harris County Texas was 10.00% according to Census ACS data.

Rental Vacancy Rate in Harris County Texas

2017 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 6.18% +0.29% -0.14%
Texas 8.49% +0.84% +1.19%
Harris County TX 10.00% +2.73% +2.96%

Trends in Harris County TX Rental Vacancy Rate

The rental vacancy rate in Harris County peaked in 2010 at 14.62%. Since then it has fallen by 4.62% to 10.00%. Data records for this series originated in 2005. From a 2015 post peak low of 6.84%, the rental vacancy rate has increased by 3.16%.

Rental Vacancy Rate: Harris County TX, Texas, US

Rental vacancy rate in Texas

Historical Rental Vacancy Rate data for Harris County

Date US Texas Harris County TX
2017 6.18% 8.49% 10.00%
2016 5.89% 7.65% 7.27%
2015 5.85% 6.95% 6.84%
2014 6.32% 7.30% 7.04%
2013 6.49% 7.86% 8.23%
2012 6.77% 8.53% 10.70%
2011 7.40% 9.23% 12.17%
2010 8.17% 10.60% 14.62%
2009 8.43% 10.69% 13.00%
2008 7.86% 10.24% 13.39%
2007 7.87% 10.61% 14.40%
2006 7.70% 10.28% 11.18%

Rent as a Fraction of Income

Using median household income data for Harris County, we can calculate the fraction of income the median household would use to pay rent at the median monthly gross rent rate. For Harris County, median monthly gross rent as a fraction of median household income was 20.69% in 2017 according to the ACS.

Harris County Texas Median Annual Rent as a Fraction of Median Household Income

2017 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 20.13% -0.30% -0.76%
Texas 20.00% -0.28% -0.27%
Harris County TX 20.69% -0.47% +0.29%

Trends in Harris County TX Rent as a Fraction of Income

The fraction of median Harris County household income required to pay median monthly gross rent peaked in 2016 (relative to the 2005 series origin) at 21.16%. Since then it has fallen by 0.47% to 20.69%.

Fraction of Income towards Rent: Harris County TX, Texas, US

Percent of median household income going towards median monthly gross rent in Harris County Texas

Historical Data for Annual Rent as a Fraction of Income in Harris County Texas

Date US Texas Harris County TX
2017 20.13% 20.00% 20.69%
2016 20.43% 20.28% 21.16%
2015 20.63% 20.10% 20.30%
2014 20.89% 20.27% 20.40%
2013 20.78% 19.89% 19.94%
2012 20.65% 19.65% 20.03%
2011 20.70% 19.75% 19.82%
2010 20.50% 19.77% 19.85%
2009 20.12% 19.59% 19.89%
2008 19.00% 18.42% 18.21%
2007 18.66% 18.52% 18.46%
2006 18.90% 18.99% 18.97%

Renter Fraction in Harris County Texas

You can calculate the renter fraction in Harris County 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 Harris County as a fraction of total Harris County households. In 2017 45.00% of households were renters according to Census ACS data.

Harris County Fraction of Renters by Household Units

2017 1 Year Change 3 Year Change
US 36.13% -0.75% -0.77%
Texas 38.03% -0.88% -0.81%
Harris County TX 45.00% -1.31% -2.10%

Trends in the Harris County TX Renter Fraction

The Harris County household renter fraction peaked in in 2014 at 47.10% and is now 2.10% below that level. The origin year for the series is 2005.

Fraction of Renting Households: Harris County TX, Texas, US

Fraction of renters in Harris County

History of Harris County Renter Fraction

Date US Texas Harris County TX
2017 36.13% 38.03% 45.00%
2016 36.88% 38.91% 46.31%
2015 36.97% 38.94% 47.01%
2014 36.90% 38.84% 47.10%
2013 36.50% 38.16% 45.74%
2012 36.09% 37.72% 44.41%
2011 35.42% 37.08% 44.13%
2010 34.65% 36.42% 42.65%
2009 34.13% 36.32% 42.94%
2008 33.36% 35.10% 41.53%
2007 32.80% 34.82% 40.97%
2006 32.73% 34.75% 41.69%

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.