|click to enlarge (graphic courtesy of Apartment List, Inc.)|
- Rents are going up all over the city. The average rent in Chicago for a 2-bedroom apartment is $1600 and a 1-bedroom is $1550.
- After Rogers Park, Uptown remains the north lakefront community with the second-lowest median rents. (The map shows only areas north of and including the South Loop.) The median rent here for a 2-bedroom apartment is $1680 and the median 1-bedroom rent is $1300. By comparison, a 2-bedroom in Edgewater averages $1800; a 2-bedroom in Lakeview goes for $2000.
- Uptown's rents rose an average of 6% over the past year, the steepest increase in the city (average for the city was 2.5%.) Rogers Park's rents rose 5.3% over the same period.
- As you go west from the lakefront, rents decrease (for the most part). A 2-bedroom in North Center goes for $1600, and a 2-bedroom in Lincoln Square goes for $1500. A 2-bedroom in Old Irving Park averages $1250 and one in Portage Park averages $1230.
- South Side communities are far more affordable than most North Side communities, even those located on the lakefront. The average rent for a 2-bedroom in South Shore is $890 and a 1-bedroom is $700 (prices rose 3.9% last year). In Lawndale, a 2-bedroom averages $980.
- The most expensive place to rent in Chicago? River North, where the average 2-bedroom place runs $3140 and the average 1-bedroom rents for $2200.
- Most expensive metro-area city to rent in? Evanston, where the average 2-bedroom goes for $2170 and the average 1-bedroom rents for $1870.
- Crystal Ball Time: With a new Purple Line express station going in at Wilson by year-end, and many rental units of transit-oriented development being built right by the station, expect to see Northwestern students take advantage of Uptown's comparatively cheaper rents by living here and using the Purple Line to commute to classes.
- Why is Evanston so expensive? One reason is the high number of tax-exempt institutions that use city resources but don't pay property taxes, including Northwestern University, several hospitals, and a high number of religious institutions (Evanston was once known as the "City of Churches" and has over 90 of them, in a city of about 75,000 residents). Because about 45% of Evanston's land is tax-exempt, the property taxes are shouldered by non-exempt properties, leading to higher rents and mortgages.