SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – Around the Bay Area, rents are down about 15-20 percent compared to last year.
However, since the pandemic has started to ease, prices are starting to climb back up.
So far in 2021, rents are up compared to last year. San Francisco rental prices are up about 5%.
San Jose is up 3%, and Oakland is up about 2.5%.
What’s unclear at this point is how high rents will eventually go.
“We are clearly seeing some growth.”
Jeff Andrews is a data journalist with Zumper.com, which tracks and lists rental properties. He expects that rental prices will continue to climb but may not get as high as they were before the pandemic.
He says that many people have permanently left the Bay Area, especially tech workers, and that they may not return.
We are not sure how broadly tech companies are going to adopt work-from-home policies. If that is very broad and people don’t return to the Bay Area in the same numbers as say New York City.
We might see the pandemic as an event that permanently lowered Bay Area rents.
The real test of what will happen with the rental market could come this Fall when many companies plan to reopen their offices and recall workers.
Prices could continue to climb until then but if people don’t come back in large numbers, rents could flatten out or possibly even drop.
Another reason that rents might not return to what they were before is that even before the pandemic people were leaving the Bay Area and rents were dropping.
Nothing has happened that could reverse that trend.