East Boston’s apartment rental market has emerged from the pandemic stronger than ever. Despite the challenges faced over the past 2 years, East Boston’s key apartment supply metrics have hit record lows in the first quarter of 2022. As a result, average rent prices for East Boston apartments have already surpassed all-time highs set during the first half of 2020.
Record Low Rental Supply in Eastie
East Boston’s real-time availability rate (RTAR) is currently 3.66%. Compared to Eastie’s pre-pandemic RTAR, there are less than half of the available apartments there were in late March 2019 when the availability rate was 7.5%. East Boston’s RTAR also started 2022 at an all-time low of 1.24%, surpassing the previous low mark set in January of 2020 (1.54%).
A look at the real-time vacancy rate (RTVR) in East Boston shows more of the same tight supply figures. The current RTVR of 0.30% is the lowest number on record by far, 51.6% lower than the previous RTVR all-time low of 0.62% set in August 2019. With plenty of rental season left until it hits its cyclical low, it looks like RTVR may approach the full occupancy mark by September 1st. That is quite a turnaround considering East Boston saw its RTVR balloon to over 8% during September 2020, shattering the all-time high record for the neighborhood.
Record Rent Prices in East Boston 2022
As a result of the record low apartment supply, East Boston’s average rent price surpassed its previous all-time high in December 2021 and has continued to trend upward. It currently sits at $2,332. Still, rent prices remain reasonable in Eastie compared to the rest of Boston. The average rent price in East Boston is over $250 less than that of Boston, and it remains one of the more affordable places to rent an apartment in Boston.
Rent prices did stagnate in East Boston during the first half of the pandemic but started trending upward early in 2021. Price growth has outpaced most of the other neighborhoods of Beantown over the past 12 months for all size apartments. Average rent prices for studio, 2 bedroom, and 3 bedroom apartments in Eastie are currently sitting at all-time highs. Also, prices for 1 and 4 bedrooms are quickly approaching their previous records.
2022 East Boston Rental Market Outlook
Given the current availability of apartments in East Boston, it looks like it will be a tough year for renters. Apartment availability has already begun to trend downward in East Boston after hitting record lows earlier this year. Those looking to rent an apartment in East Boston should not wait this year, as rental supply might become desolate as we approach September.
As a result, rent prices in Eastie will continue to climb throughout 2022. Rental demand has never been higher in East Boston, and the neighborhood is in desperate need of more rental units to meet the call. There’s hope on the horizon with the massive Suffolk Downs development project in the works, which could add more than 10,000 units to East Boston’s housing inventory. Unfortunately, that project won’t be completed until the end of 2023, and rental supply will likely remain tight into the foreseeable future. Let’s hope our elected officials will streamline opportunities for even greater development in this fantastic area that has incredible city views.
Published March 28, 2022
Demetrios has pulled together the largest apartment leasing team in the Greater Boston Area and is responsible for procuring more apartment rentals than anyone in New England – with over 130k people finding their housing through his services. Demetrios is an avid real estate developer, peak performance trainer, educator, guest lecturer and motivational speaker.