San Diego rental costs are increasing at a staggering rate in all cities including downtown San Diego, Encinitas, Coronado, San Marcos, Del Mar, La Jolla, UTC, Ocean Beach and Pacific Beach. This is why many people in San Diego question if it makes more sense to rent or to buy? 

[pullquote]San Diego is the 9th most expensive real estate rental market in the U.S. with a low 4% vacancy rate, compared to Los Angeles that is the #2 most expensive.  This means there is a lot of demand and not enough supply, particularly for affordable rentals. [/pullquote]

Many of our customers who are moving to San Diego share with our San Diego movers their shock and dismay at how much more expensive their San Diego rental house is compared to where they used to live. This is something that everyone needs to know about before moving to San Diego.[spacer height=”20px”]

FACT: The average cost of rent in San Diego is $2400 in 2017.

San Diego Rental Prices Highest Priced Areas

If you are wanting a larger apartment there are upscale apartments in new apartments in Gaslamp where you can pay as much as $4200 for a more luxurious apartment. La Jolla has one of the highest rent areas at $3600 on average according to Rentjungle for apartments and condos. This is followed by Little Italy,

San Diego is the 9th most expensive rental market in the U.S. with a 4% vacancy rate.

The average cost of rent in San Diego is $2400
Average rent increase per year is $62.00

Average rents in other areas:
-La Jolla is $3660.00
-Little Italy is $2853
-East Village $2687
-Cortez Hill $2588
-UTC is $2159
-Ocean Beach is $2019
-Pacific Beach $1872

San Diego Rental Costs: Least Expensive Areas

According to an article, “Why Your Rent Won’t Stop Rising” in the San Diego Tribune, the least expensive city to rent in is El Cajon at $1280. This has to be weighed by safety, quality of schools, commute time and other factors that are important when choosing the best place to live in San Diego California.

San Diego County’s least-expensive areas
Area Rent Annual change
El Cajon/Santee/Lakeside $1,280 6.4 percent
San Diego East of I-15 $1,307 7.6 percent
Vista $1,427.09 6.5 percent
Escondido/San Marcos $1,436 3.9 percent
Balboa Park/West of I-15 $1,447.6 18.4 percent
Source: CBRE Econometric Advisors


San Diego Rental Costs Versus Buying a House?

In 2016 only Only 229 single-family homes built in the county last year was under $500,000, according to an article in the San Diego Times. [spacer height=”10px” id=”2″]

  • The average cost of a detached house is $659,260.
  • The average cost of a townhouse was $617,467

A survey from, concluded that people moving to San Diego need to expect to make $103,165 a year to afford a median-priced home — including the principal, interest, taxes and insurance payments.