US home rental price growth drops to even with wages

WASHINGTON — U.S. renters are seeing their housing costs rise at a much more manageable pace, as new construction has tempered years of runaway increases in rent.

Real estate data firm Zillow says that median rent rose a seasonally adjusted 2.6 percent in June from a year ago, matching the gains in average hourly wages. Rental costs have decelerated after consistently exceeding earnings growth in previous years, a sign that additional building is giving more options.

The median monthly rent nationwide was $1,409. Annual increases in rent surpassed 9 percent in both the Seattle and Portland, Oregon areas, although it has moderated in markets such as San Francisco, where yearly price growth went from double-digit gains to 7.4 percent.

Prices are rising above the national average in New York City and Los Angeles. But they’ve settled at less than 2 percent in Cincinnati and Cleveland, host of the Republican National Convention this week.

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