Allston Apartment Rental Market Report 2019

2019 was an interesting year for both the Allston apartment rental market and Boston as a whole. In a year that saw a gradual leveling of growth throughout most of Boston, Allston has emerged as one of the stronger and more promising markets. This is great news for Allston after a period of stagnant and low increases in rents over the last several years. Growth in average rent prices in Allston outpaced that of the city as a whole for all sized units, and it appears as if we’re seeing an increase in demand for apartments in Allston as more and more people are getting priced out of the highly sought after neighborhoods close to downtown.

We are also seeing different styles and classes of investors buying properties and starting to put more money into the properties in Allston. This slow changing of the landlord guard is driving some upward pricing. For years many people would complain that large groups of landlords were not improving their properties but essentially just maintaining them. There appears to be new optimism in the recent buyers of properties in the area.

AVG RENT PRICE 1BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 2BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 3BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 4BR

ALLSTON

ALLSTON

ALLSTON

ALLSTON

$1,894

$2,364

$2,891

$3,733

+3.55%

+2.29%

-0.31%

+0.08%

 

AVG RENT PRICE 1BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 2BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 3BR

AVERAGE RENT PRICE 4BR

BOSTON

BOSTON

BOSTON

BOSTON

$2,165

$2,564

$3,013

$3,652

+2.32%

+1.91%

-0.86%

+0.38%

Growth in average rent prices in 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom apartments in Allston was almost double that of the City of Boston. An interesting trend we’ve seen in many smaller markets in Boston has been a decrease in average rent prices for larger size units. However the average rent price for 3 bedroom apartments in Allston only fell slightly.

The four bedroom data that we are examining seems to indicate an almost exact same price point as 2018. We believe this will change next year and move four bedroom pricing higher as the disparity between smaller bedroom counts and larger bedroom counts widen. As nearly always, the more renovated properties that come to market seem to have no problem renting quickly at higher points.

Comparing Allston Rent Prices to Other Neighborhoods in Boston

When looking at average rent prices in Allston compared to other neighborhoods inside Boston, Allston ranges from average to below average depending on the size of the unit. For smaller units, Allston tends to be below average in pricing, offering renters relief from steep prices for Studios, 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom apartments relatively close to downtown. However, for larger units Allston is much closer to what is considered average for Boston as a whole.

Town Neighborhood

Studio

Bedroom 1

Bedroom 2

Bedroom 3

Bedroom 4

Bedroom 5

All Areas $1,790 $2,130 $2,527 $3,005 $3,706 $4,423
City of Boston $1,810 $2,165 $2,564 $3,013 $3,652 $4,320
Outside Boston $1,724 $2,057 $2,468 $2,993 $3,804 $4,587
ALLSTON $1,647 $1,894 $2,364 $2,891 $3,733 $4,164
MISSION HILL $1,627 $1,876 $2,497 $3,179 $3,903 $4,979
SOUTH BOSTON $1,951 $2,156 $2,789 $3,575 $4,430 $6,261
JAMAICA PLAIN $1,337 $1,829 $2,368 $2,866 $3,545 $4,063
WEST ROXBURY $1,452 $1,813 $2,266 $2,394 $2,827 $4,250
BRIGHTON $1,618 $1,903 $2,261 $2,808 $3,395 $4,279
EAST BOSTON $1,300 $1,857 $2,232 $2,637 $3,097 $2,971
ROSLINDALE $1,700 $1,818 $2,056 $2,422 $2,933

An interesting take from this table is that average rent prices in Allston are comparable and even slightly lower than prices outside of Boston Proper. As rent prices soar in neighborhoods closer to Downtown, Allston gives renters the option of still living in the city close to the action without having to move to the suburbs.

Other neighborhoods in Boston with similar rent prices include Mission Hill, Brighton, and Jamaica Plain. All of these neighborhoods offer renters similar advantages in cost of living and easy access to areas downtown.

Allston Rent Pricing Forecast: 2020

In comparison to Boston as a whole, the trend in rental prices looks favorable for continued growth in 2020. Up until Q4, prices were steadily increasing throughout the year in Allston for 2 bedroom apartments, while Boston saw a leveling of prices for 2 bedroom much earlier in Q3.

This Q4 price leveling is a trend we see every year when the 9/1 leasing cycle comes to a close. After 9/1, any vacant units typically will see a price reduction as a result of much lower demand in Q4. That has not been the case in Allston, as prices have remained steady and even increased in Q4. This suggests that demand is still driving upward pressure on pricing moving into 2020.

Allston Apartment Supply – Vacancy and Availability %

Like many neighborhoods in Boston, apartment supply is at historic lows at the moment, as residents scramble to find affordable units in Greater Boston. Out of 3,989 total non-luxury apartments in our database, only 36 are currently vacant and available for immediate move-in while another 9 are set to become available at some point in the future.

Town Neighborhood

Total Apartments Non Luxury

Total Available Non Luxury

Real Time Availability Rate

Total Vacant Non Luxury

Real Time Vacancy Rate

All Areas 151306 239 1.96% 902 1.27%
City Of Boston 122018 144 2.13% 502 1.19%
Outside Boston 30378 95 1.71% 400 1.37%
ALLSTON 3989 9 1.89% 36 0.91%
SOUTH BOSTON 2521 15 1.52% 35 1.40%
JAMAICA PLAIN 1575 6 1.28% 10 0.64%
ROSLINDALE 548 1 1.66% 9 1.66%
BRIGHTON 7787 16 1.60% 71 0.91%
WEST ROXBURY 780 3 1.83% 10 1.31%
MISSION HILL 2131 22 6.16% 21 1.00%
EAST BOSTON 1678 2 1.71% 22 1.34%

Both the Real-time Vacancy Rate and the Real-time Availability Rate are lower in Allston than the City of Boston at the moment. The fact that prices have remained steady through Q4 suggests demand for housing is still high strong in Allston despite historical trends of lower Q4 demand for housing. This should keep upward pressure on prices going into 2020. We will revisit this in a few months to check on seasonal trends and its effect on these numbers.

For renters looking to find an apartment in Allston, we suggest performing your search in Q1 or Q2 as historically this is when you’ll have the most options available. As you can see from the charts below, apartment supply trends are very much hinged on the 9/1 leasing date.

If you’re looking for an immediate move-in for Q4 you will experience fewer options, and there is wide ranging quality standards. Some of the apartments that are still available today went vacant in September and need improvements. Landlords we have spoken with are open to deals, and will offer painting and other minor renovations in exchange for keeping their rent where they want to be in terms of price.

Typically the Availability Rate (apartments set to become available in future months) is much higher in Allston during the first half of the year. This is because Allston is close to several large local universities, and during this time frame landlords will typically learn when their units will become available. Once they learn when their units are being vacated, they will list that unit as available even while its occupied to try to fill the unit as soon as the current tenants move out.

By planning ahead and performing your apartment search in the first half of the year, you’ll have a much larger inventory of apartments to select from. To find the best deals, get in touch with one of the apartment experts here on Allston Pads. They will perform an Allston apartment search based on what you’re looking for in an apartment, and match you with options that fit your lifestyle and your budget.

For landlords looking to get access to data like this and more, the apartment rental experts here on Allston Pads can provide the help and support you need. From maximizing rental income to optimizing your leasing cycle, you can lean on our expertise and our data to make more informed decisions and maximize your return on investment. Get started by listing your Allston apartment for free with us.

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