UrbanTurf Reader Asks: $330 a Month in Rent in DC?

by UrbanTurf Staff

In this installment of UrbanTurf Reader Asks, a reader inquires as to whether or not the type of legendary rent deals that are famous in New York City exist in DC. This past weekend, I was reading The New York Times real estate section and came across a story about a man who rents a 1,200 square-foot, four-bedroom Greenwich Village apartment for just $331 a month. The apartment is one of 16,000 rent-controlled apartments in New York, and is located in an area where two-bedroom apartments fetch $4,500 a month. I have lived in DC for several years, renting first and then buying, and have never heard of deals this good. Does anything like the New York City apartment deal exists in DC, outside of subsidized or affordable housing? As jealous as I would be, I would love to hear of any stories about people who pay obscenely low rent in the city. Rent control in DC was established as part of the Rental Housing Act of 1985. Essentially, it restricts the frequency and amount by which owners of housing units covered by rent control can adjust the monthly rents of their tenants. It also requires landlords to give tenants adequate notification of rent increases and provides for an appeals process for tenants who believe that rents have been raised improperly. For housing subject to rent control, adjustments in rent amounts are only permitted once every 12 months and tenants must receive a minimum of 30 days notification of proposed increases.
A ward-by-ward look at DC properties subject to rent control.
Post your responses in the comments section. If you would like to submit a question for UrbanTurf Reader Asks, send an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

See other articles related to: urbanturf reader asks, rent control

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/urbanturf_reader_asks_330_a_month_in_rent_in_dc/4981


  1. BT said at 4:50 pm on Tuesday January 24, 2012:

    I know of a guy who pays $500 for a two-bedroom east of Logan Circle, but it can’t really hold a candle to that Manhattan rent. Wow!

  1. bear said at 5:04 pm on Tuesday January 24, 2012:

    I found a “steal” on craigslist for a rent-controlled apt on Washington Circle for $1000/mo.  A true one-bedroom with a fireplace and washer/dryer in the unit (not a basement unit).  About the best i’ve ever seen in dc…

  1. meredith said at 5:05 pm on Tuesday January 24, 2012:

    DC has rent control, but I have not heard anything as extreme as nyc where rents seem to stay the same at one apartment for decades.

  1. Alex said at 5:28 pm on Tuesday January 24, 2012:

    8 2011 college grads living in a 6 bedroom house 2 blocks from RI Ave Metro… 4500/mo 8 ways isn’t quite the NY steal but a full backyard and shared living expenses helps beat the system allowing us to live and work in DC at 23 years old.

  1. Kate said at 7:42 pm on Tuesday January 24, 2012:

    I’ve been in the same one bedroom rent controlled apartment on Hill for 10 years now and I pay $1200 a month, which is a couple hundrend a month less than apartments that have turned over a few times go for. 

    In DC there are relatively few large units that qualify for rent control so you generally don’t have people inheriting them from parents and that kind of thing.  It’s just not *that* good a deal.

  1. Chris in Eckington said at 9:34 am on Wednesday January 25, 2012:

    I lived in a rent controled unit in Ward 1 for six years.  My understanding of how it works in DC is that once you move out (or the name on the lease changes), they can charge the next tenant whatever the market rate is at the time, and from that point on it can only be raised the amounts mentioned above.  Also, I believe subletting is illegal, so the only tenants who are getting really good deals are ones that have been in their units for years and years.

Comments are closed.

DC Real Estate Guides

Short guides to navigating the DC-area real estate market

We've collected all our helpful guides for buying, selling and renting in and around Washington, DC in one place. Visit guides.urbanturf.com or start browsing below!

Northern Virginia

Profiles of 14 neighborhoods across Northern Virginia

Looking to Give People A Reason to Stay Past 6pm
Happily Straddling the Line Between City and Suburb
Columbia Pike
Arlington’s Neglected Stepchild is Getting a Makeover
Crystal City
Turning Lemons into Lemonade
Lyon Village
Developing An Air of Exclusivity?
Hitting Its Growth Spurt
An Urban Village Hitting Its Stride
Del Ray
Virginia’s Small Town Near the Big City
Eisenhower Avenue
The Vibrancy Might Take a Few Years
The Quiet Neighborhood By the Beltway
Old Town
Mayberry By The Potomac
132 Commerical-Free Acres
Downtown Falls Church
Staying the Same in the Midst of Change
Tysons Corner
Radical Change Could Be On The Way

See more Northern Virginia »


Profiles of 14 neighborhoods in suburban Maryland

Small-Town Living in the State Capital
Bedroom Community Gets Buzzing Cache
Cabin John
In With The New While Maintaining the Old
Chevy Chase
Affluence, Green Lawns and Pricey Homes
Downtown Silver Spring
Experiencing a Resurgence After a Bumpy History
A Suburb on Steroids
Rockville Town Square
Despite the Dynamism, Still Somewhat Generic
Takoma Park
More Than a Little Bit Quirky
A Foodie Magnet on the Verge of Change
Capitol Heights
Kudzu, Front Porches and Crime
Glass Half Full or Half Empty?
Mount Rainier
Artists, Affordable Homes and A Silo Full of Corn
National Harbor
A Development Rises Next to the Potomac
Riverdale Park
A Town Looking For Its Identity

See more Maryland »

Northwest DC

30+ neighborhood profiles for the city's biggest quadrant

16th Street Heights
DC's Sleeper Neighborhood
Where (Almost) Everyone Knows Your Name
AU Park
One of DC’s Last Frontiers Before the Suburbs
DC’s Northern Neighborhood on the Cusp
DC’s 535 House Neighborhood
Cathedral Heights
Do You Know Where That Is?
Chevy Chase DC
Not to Be Confused With the Other Chevy Chase
Cleveland Park
Coming Back After A Rough Year
Columbia Heights
DC’s Most Diverse Neighborhood, But For How Long?
An Island of Serenity East of the Park
Dupont Circle
The Best of DC (For a Price)
Foggy Bottom & West End
Where the Institutional Meets the International
Forest Hills
Ambassadors and Adventurous Architecture
Foxhall Village
350 Homes Just West of Georgetown
Friendship Heights
A Shopping Mecca With a Few Places to Live
History, Hoyas and H&M
Glover Park
One of DC’s Preppier and More Family-Friendly Neighborhoods
A Posh View From Embassy Row
LeDroit Park
A Quiet Enclave in the Middle of the City
Logan Circle
Trendy Now, But Not By Accident
Mount Pleasant
Sought-After Homes Surround Main Street in Transition
Mount Vernon Triangle
From Seedy to Sought-After
The Long, Skinny Neighborhood at the City’s Northwest Edge
Park View
It’s Not Petworth
Penn Quarter/Chinatown
DC’s Go-Go-Go Neighborhood
Getting a Vibrancy of Its Own
The Duke’s Former Stomping Ground
Shepherd Park
DC’s Garden of Diversity
Spring Valley
A Suburb With a DC Zip Code
Not To Be Confused With Takoma Park
Not Quite Like Its Neighbors
U Street Corridor
The Difference a Decade Makes
Woodley Park
Deceptively Residential
Adams Morgan
No Longer DC’s Hippest Neighborhood, But Still Loved by Residents

See more Northwest DC »

Southwest DC

The little quadrant that could

Southwest Waterfront
A Neighborhood Where A Change Is Gonna Come

See more Southwest DC »

Northeast DC

Profiles of 10 neighborhoods in NE

New Development Could Shake Up Pastoral Peace
A Little Bit of Country Just Inside the District’s Borders
Not to Be Confused With Bloomingdale
Fort Totten
Five Years Could Make a Big Difference
H Street
A Place To Party, and To Settle Down
The Northeast Neighborhood That Few Know About
Michigan Park
A Newsletter-On-Your-Doorstep Community
Evolving from a Brand to a Neighborhood
Ripe for Investment Right About Now
The Difference 5 Years Makes
Big Houses, A Dusty Commercial Strip and Potential

See more Northeast DC »

Southeast DC

6 neighborhoods from Capitol Hill to East of the River

Capitol Riverfront
Still Growing
Hill East
Capitol Hill’s Lesser Known Neighbor
Congress Heights
Gradually Rising
Notable for Its Neighborliness
Historic Anacostia
Future Promise Breeds Cautious Optimism
Eastern Market
A More European Way of Living

See more Southeast DC »

Upcoming Seminars ▾