How much does the world spend on rent?

As renting a property in London becomes more costly, Londoners are realising that buying their own home is now the preferred budget option for the long-term. We look at average rent prices in the leading cities across the globe to find out how London’s rental market compares.

When it comes to renting in some of the leading cities around the world, it can seem like most of your salary goes on putting a roof above your head.

In fact, in San Francisco, London, Hong Kong and Tokyo the cost of renting a one-bedroom flat is close to 50% of the average salary, coming in at 47%, 45%, 44% and 42% respectively.

New York may traditionally be regarded as one of the most expensive cities in the United States, but it’s recently been taken over by San Francisco; with the average rent at £2,786 ($3,510) in the City by the Bay compared to £2,532 ($3,190) in the Big Apple. Despite these high prices, 63% of the population in San Fran continue to rent; just shy of the 75% in NYC.

In London, we see a similar situation to San Francisco with 62% of Londoners renting property. The average rent of a one-bedroom flat may be less than half the price as San Francisco, at £1,250 pm, but it still equates to 40% of the average salary in our capital.

When it comes to the actual cost of rent, the residents of Sydney are spending on average £1,558 (AUS $2,600) per month, although with high salaries this is still an affordable 28% of their average salary.

Looking at some of the biggest cities in Europe, we see that renting is very much a way of life with Berlin, Paris and Vienna having home ownership rates of less than 35%, and less than 30% of the average salary spent on rent.

The opposite is said of Singapore, with 91% of people owning their own home. Those that do rent are spending 40% of their salary to do so.

One of the most affordable cities to rent a property in is Cape Town, where a one-bedroom apartment costs on average at £442 pm (R 7,385), about 23% of the average wage per month. Despite this, buying a property remains consistently popular, as home ownership has reached 64% in Cape Town.

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City

Home Ownership Rate

Rental Price (£) *1 bed apartments

% of wage on rent

San Francisco

37%

£2,768 pm

47%

London

38%

£1,250 pm

45%

Hong Kong

51%

£715 pm

44%

Tokyo

40%

£1,165 pm

42%

New York City

25%

£2,532 pm

40%

Rome

73%

£1,106 pm

40%

Singapore

91%

£1,540 pm

40%

Amsterdam

29%

£861 pm

37%

Geneva

45%

£1,193 pm

33%

Nice

48%

£681 pm

33%

Barcelona

70%

£651 pm

32%

Milan

73%

£627 pm

30%

Toronto

68%

£732 pm

30%

Vienna

25%

£681 pm

30%

Sydney

30%

£1,558 pm

28%

Berlin

16%

£407 pm

28%

Paris

33%

£824 pm

27%

Dublin

71%

£935 pm

25%

Cape Town

64%

£442 pm

23%

Prague

78%

£347 pm

21%

All information is correct as of January 2017

Calculated figures based on gross average salaries in each city

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