Miami-Dade County

Only two U.S. cities have more renters than Miami — and they’re not New York or L.A.

The City of Miami has proportionately more renters than any place in the country after Newark and Jersey City, N.J., a new report says.
The City of Miami has proportionately more renters than any place in the country after Newark and Jersey City, N.J., a new report says. Miami Herald file

Guess which of the following major U.S. cities has the most renters — New York, Boston, L.A. or Miami?

If you picked Miami, give yourself a pat on the back. According to a new study, the city has the largest proportion of renters versus homeowners in the country after Newark and Jersey City, N.J.

Yes, that’s more renters, as percentage of the population, than New York City or Los Angeles, cities where housing is so notoriously expensive that only the affluent can afford to own.

Miami’s proportion of renters — 68 percent — has ticked up in the decade since the Great Recession slammed the homeownership market across the country, according to a study by RENTCafe, a national apartment search website. The study examined the city of Miami, not larger Miami-Dade.

Meanwhile, the suburban Miami-Dade city of Hialeah, which has become the principal entry point for Cuban newcomers, swung from being a majority-ownership city to one where renters predominate, according to RENTCafe, which crunched Census Bureau statistics for the country’s largest 100 cities for the decade between 2006 and 2016.

The share of renters in Hialeah, 43 percent in 2006, rose to nearly 55 percent by 2016, the study found.

Overall, the growth in the share of renters outpaced the growth of homeownership in 97 of 100 large cities, according to the study. That’s likely a lingering effect of the recession, the report said, noting that more recent data suggest the expansion of renting is slowing.

“The fact that renting has seen a sudden gain in popularity is more a reaction to the economic crisis than a paradigm shift in the Americans’ attitude toward housing,” the report said.

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