New research shows that the cheapest time to rent an apartment is between December and March

By Georgia Slater
January 28, 2020 03:42 PM

In the market for a new apartment? Now might be the best time to look, new research finds.

In a study conducted by RentHop, an apartment listing site, the company analyzed the top 10 cities based on population to determine the best and worst times to sign an apartment lease. The study found that the winter months were the most affordable time to rent, while the summer months will do far more damage to your wallet.

Research shows that the cheapest months to rent are between December and March (early winter to early spring) whereas the most expensive time is May through October (early summer to early fall).

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Regardless of the region, the study found that apartments in the winter came at a 3.4 percent “discount” when compared to leases in peak summer months.

Spencer Platt/Getty

One of the main reasons winter is the best time to apartment hunt? The smaller demand for housing.

The study points out that more people tend to move in the summer as people are beginning to start work or school in the fall. Conversely, there are typically fewer job changes during the winter months.

The weather also plays a part in determining which time of year is best to rent.

Since people are less inclined to search for an apartment during the colder months around the holidays, this makes for less competition, hence the lower prices.

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The study measured the temperature patterns of the top cities and found a moderate correlation (0.61) between temperature variations and rent variations.

The RentHop researchers also urge renters to get on “winter” lease renewals and to be conscious of “non-standard lease-terms” which could push their winter schedule into a higher-priced summer or early spring schedule.

It is also noted that while the prices in the winter may be cheaper, there may not be as large of an apartment selection to choose from, due to the decreased movement during that time.

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