We research all brands listed and may earn a fee from our partners. Research and financial considerations may influence how brands are displayed. Not all brands are included. Learn more.

Sacramento skyline and riverfront
Getty Images

Although you probably shouldn't be holding your breath for significantly more affordable rents in 2023, here's a glimmer of good news: Some relief from unrelenting price increases is well underway.

It still costs renters 20% more to take out a new lease than it did three years ago, according to a report from the real estate listing site Redfin. But data shows rents continued cooling into December after many consecutive months of double-digit year-over-year increases, even in some of the hottest markets.

While that doesn’t mean renters should expect killer deals to surface in the new year, this month marked the smallest year-over-year increase in median asking rents (5%) since July 2021.

Economists at another listing site, Realtor.com, say that although they expect rental prices to continue climbing nationally, the trend of double-digit hikes is likely over. As of November, rentals in nine of the 50 largest cities in the U.S. have posted year-over-year declines, particularly in the Sun Belt, West and South.

December also brought about the seventh straight month of slowed rent growth, according to Redfin. Rents dropped 1.4% from November and 3.6% from their peak in August, when the national median asking rent was $2,053. Redfin’s latest rental market report puts the current U.S. median asking rent at $1,979.

These are the nine U.S. metros where rent prices are down compared to December 2021, according to Realtor.com.

  1. Riverside, California
    Median rent as of November: $2,071
    Year-over-year change: -5.5%
  2. Las Vegas, Nevada
    Median rent: $1,481
    Year-over-year rent change: -4.9%
  3. Sacramento, California
    Median rent: $1,838
    Year-over-year rent change: -4.8%
  4. New Orleans, Louisiana
    Median rent: $1,371
    Year-over-year rent change: -2.8%
  5. Phoenix, Arizona
    Median rent: $1,600
    Year-over-year rent change: -2%
  6. Atlanta, Georgia
    Median rent: $1,689
    Year-over-year rent change: -1.8%
  7. Tampa, Florida
    Median rent: $1,783
    Year-over-year rent change: -1.8%
  8. Jacksonville, Florida
    Median rent: $1,454
    Year-over-year rent change: -0.8%
  9. Austin, Texas
    Median rent: $1,656
    Year-over-year rent change: -0.6%

More from Money:

Is It Better to Rent or Buy a House?

'Sloppy' Background Checks Are Preventing Renters From Securing Housing

Current Mortgage Rates Retreat Once Again