Rents for one and two-bedroom apartments across the nation have exploded by more than 24 percent since February last year, according to the most recent Rent Report analysis.

But the City of Atlanta continues to buck the rent-spike trend to a mystifying degree, according to that study. Other recent data, however, paints a different picture.

Atlanta joins a tiny minority of cities—all of them much smaller metro areas—studied by for the March report where one-bedroom rents have decreased year-over-year. Every market saw two-bedroom apartments climb to some degree in the past year.

The City of Atlanta’s one-bedroom rents have dipped by 7.1 percent since early 2021 to $1,542 on average, according to the analysis.

Only four other cities—all of them in the Midwest, led by Kansas City with a decrease of 19.7 percent—landed ahead of (or below) Atlanta.

Meanwhile, two-bedroom prices in Atlanta inched up by .5 percent, to an average of $2,112, or 38th most expensive in the country.

That’s just below places like Detroit, Saint Louis, and Aurora, Colorado—and much cheaper than the priciest major city on the list, Boston, where two-bedroom rents have notched up to $4,894 monthly. (See an interactive map here.)

Year-over-year rent fluctuations by city, as of February. Black equals -20 percent change in one-bedroom apartments, and the darkest blue is +60 percent.

Granted, that analysis was limited to rentals in Apartment Guide and’s multifamily property inventory, which is vast.

Norada Real Estate Investments points to Buckhead, Lindbergh, Emory, and development-magnet Midtown as areas that have experienced the sharpest rent declines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Suburban markets, the company notes, “did not suffer much.”

Using data, the investment firm pegs Atlanta's one-bedroom rents at $1,700 per month now, and two-bedrooms at $2,140 monthly.

Those are higher than’s findings, if moderately so. But—and here’s the kicker!—both rent levels represent spikes of around 15 percent over this time last year, per Zumper.

From a rental perspective, Atlanta still seems like a relative bargain, but what’s really happening out there? What are you, dear renters of ATL, seeing on your lease renewals today?

CA Ventures' 903 Peachtree project, as shown in January, will add more than 400 rentals to Atlanta's signature street.Josh Green/Urbanize Atlanta

Signs of real competition in the intown market continue to abound, despite an influx of multifamily housing across the city.  

From downtown to Buckhead Village and Kirkwood, newer complexes are offering free rent to entice tenants. Other new buildings once planned as traditional apartments have switched to “hospitality models” that allow stays for just a few days.  

Georgia overall saw rents balloon by 29 percent from 2020 to 2021, up to $1,514 monthly. That’s a steeper increase than California (22 percent growth) but pales in comparison to Florida (46 percent), per an earlier analysis.  

First look: Ambitious affordable housing build shows life downtown (Urbanize Atlanta)