Over the last year, the median monthly cost of a suburban rental is up 2.5 percent. The median cost of an urban rental, meanwhile, rose only 2.3 percent.
Zillow notes that this is the first time in four years that suburban rents have outpaced urban rents. Last year at this time, urban rents were up 5 percent year over year, while suburban rents were up 3 percent.
The site theorizes that years of rent hikes have pushed people outside of the city, where rents are cheaper. Suburban rents are rising the fastest in hot markets such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Portland.
The foreclosure crisis pushed many former homeowners to rent the same kind of single-family homes they had owned just a few years prior – many of them very likely located in the suburbs. … 19.2 percent of single-family homes were rented last year, up from 12.7 percent in 2005. Metro areas that had the most intense foreclosure activity – places like Las Vegas and Phoenix – have seen some of the greatest increases in the share of single-family home rentals.