The Missoula Organization of Realtors released a report that more precisely shows what we already knew— the cost of rentals has gone up big time since 2010. Sure, that's blatantly obvious on a broad level, but seeing some numbers behind that fact can provide some insight on the specifics.

They calculated the average rent cost in Missoula County from 2010 to 2022 and found the cost ballooned from $705 to $1,034. an almost 47% increase in that 12-year period. To put these numbers into perspective, I'll compare the average rent costs in 2013 to some properties I found available now for rent on

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According to the Missoula Organization of Realtors, the average cost of rent in Missoula County in 2013 was $730. Today, you can rent a 310 square feet studio apartment on Woody Street downtown with a bathroom for $715 a month, a $550 per month 550 square feet apartment with 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom on Prince Street off 5th Street, and for $2,095 a month you can get a 1,288 square feet 2 bedroom 2 bath apartment in East Missoula.

Vacancy rates in the city of Missoula fell from 2012 to 2022, from 3.5% to 1.2%. For context, "a healthy rental market has vacancy rates from 5%-8%" according to the Missoula Organization of Realtors.

As for rental rates, their report reads "average rental rates increased 11.4% in 2022, with 1-bedroom & 2-bedroom multi-plex increasing 18.1% and 15.7% respectively. Rental rate increases began to decelerate towards the end of 2022 as vacancy rates and days on market have begun to rise" so the bad news is those rates hadn't begun to fall in 2022, but at least the rate at which rates were increasing did slow down. That's not much of a comfort, but it's something.

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