Best known to most as the home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Cleveland has rebuilt itself over the last few decades as a thriving arts, cultural and trendy entertainment city with gorgeous major league sports facilities, a reviving downtown, two large universities, parks, music and a beautiful river (The Cuyahoga) and lake (Lake Erie) that don't even catch on fire anymore.
But where are the hot in Cleveland neighborhoods? We compared the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in every Cleveland neighborhood on Rent.com to prices in those same spots a year ago. From this, we determined the most expensive Cleveland neighborhoods where rent has increased the most.
- Price increase over the past year: 3.60 percent
- Average rent for one-bedroom in Warehouse District: $1,185
Cleveland's historic Warehouse District sits on the northwestern end of downtown, the closest residential neighborhood to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the Browns' FirstEnergy Stadium and the mouth of the famous Cuyahoga River. The eight-block district has had many lives over its history.
Originally home to some of Cleveland's first city residents in the 1800s, the area gave rise to wholesale business, distribution hubs and its namesake warehouses for most of the 20th century.
But as business moved away to other parts of Ohio in the 1980s, artists, comedians and musicians moved in to reclaim the neighborhood for residential use. As the neighborhood continued to revitalize, rents increased and the artists gave way to young professionals, turning the Warehouse District into a hotspot for brewpubs, cafes and nightlife.
As demand for Warehouse District lofts and reclaimed artist spaces increased for 20-somethings and young couples, so did rents over the last 12 months. The average price for a one-bedroom apartment has risen by 3.6 percent to an average monthly rate of $1,185.
- Price increase over the past year: 7.34 percent
- Average rent for one-bedroom in Downtown: $1,366
Since revitalization started in the early 1990s, the residential population of Downtown Cleveland has quite literally doubled, from 7,300 in 1990 to an estimated 15,000 today. Add to that the over 100,000 Clevelanders that work in the lakefront neighborhood, and it's no surprise demand for residential space is at a premium.
The heart of Downtown Cleveland is Public Square, the original center of town as laid out by city founder Moses Cleaveland in 1796. The large open space is divided into four distinct quadrants and is home to public gatherings, concerts, festivals and office workers having lunch al fresco.
Public Square is surrounded by some of the largest buildings in Ohio, including Terminal Tower and Tower City Center, 200 Public Square (formerly the BP Building) and Key Tower, the tallest building in Ohio, as well as historic Old Stone Church.
Residential buildings in Downtown are primarily situated along the Euclid Street and Prospect Avenue corridors from Public Square out towards Cleveland State University. These boulevards link areas like Cleveland's Financial District, Theater District (the largest performing arts district in the nation outside of New York) and Millionaires' Row, formerly home to mansions and luminaries, including favorite son John D. Rockefeller.
You don't have to be a millionaire to live in Downtown Cleveland, but rental prices for an average one-bedroom rose to $1,366, a 7.34 percent increase in the last year.
- Price increase over the past year: 7.74 percent
- Average rent for one-bedroom in Hough: $1,415
Neighborhoods around the nation that have had significant increases in rental pricing fall into one of two categories: Premier residential and nightlife districts getting even pricier, and formerly depressed neighborhoods making a comeback through revitalization. Hough, Cleveland, is one of the latter.
Hough, located along the midtown corridor on Cleveland's east side, is one of the city's oldest neighborhoods, and home to about a third of the campus of the Cleveland Clinic. Its heyday was during Prohibition, where the district became known as “Little Hollywood," due to the preponderance of speakeasies and brothels that lined Lexington and Hough Avenues, now home to an apartment complex. During this same era, the Indians played ball down the block at League Field, as well.
In 1966, the neighborhood was the site of the infamous Hough Riots which was the flashpoint for massive population flight from the area. Over the ensuing five decades, the neighborhood has undergone a slow recovery to today where new construction, renewal and an increase in residential units abound. The proof of that can be found in the 7.74 percent increase in rental prices in Hough, where $1,145 a month will snag you an average one-bedroom apartment.
- Price increase over the past year: 11.83 percent
- Average rent for one-bedroom in Gateway District: $1,398
Photo by Chris Chow on Unsplash
Often, the better your neighbors, the higher your rent. That can be doubly true if your neighbors happen to be two successful major league sports franchises. The Indians have won three consecutive Division titles, and came within one inning of winning the 2016 World Series — the same year their neighbor the Cavaliers captured their first NBA championship. Progressive Field and Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse, their respective home stadiums, are the main attractions of the Gateway Sports and Entertainment Complex in Cleveland's Gateway District.
But it's not just balls in the Gateway District. Built around the grounds of a former produce market, the region is a mix of retail, housing and dining options. East 4th Street is home to trendy cafes, restaurants and entertainment locales, including Cleveland's House of Blues, famous comedy club Pickwick & Frolic and "Iron Chef" Michael Symon's Lola Bistro.
The corridor of Euclid Avenue that runs through Gateway not only contains a plethora of retail shops and eateries, but also some of Cleveland's tallest office centers, including 200 Public Square (formerly the BP Building) and PNC Center, as well as the Cleveland Arcade, purported to be the first indoor shopping mall in the nation.
Throughout the Gateway District are a selection of large apartment buildings and refurbished loft spaces above retail shops. But as the Indians, Cavs and the neighborhood's fortunes rose, so did rents, up a significant 11.83 percent for an average one-bedroom unit to $1,398 monthly.
- Price increase over the past year: 44.28 percent
- Average rent for one-bedroom in University Circle: $1,853
Low population density and limited availabilities? Check. A prestigious university? Check. Renowned cultural attractions? Check check. That's a recipe that makes for one in-demand neighborhood and skyrocketing rental pricing.
Cleveland's University Circle, situated on the extreme east side of the city limits, has almost everything. Not only is the district centered around Case Western Reserve University, but also includes the specialty campuses of the Cleveland Institute of Art and Institute of Music. As with many university neighborhoods, it's also a cultural hub, featuring the Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland Orchestra, Museum of Contemporary Art, Botanical Garden and Museum of Natural History.
Described as one of “America's Prettiest Neighborhoods" by Forbes, University Circle – or “The Circle" as locals say — has experienced a building boom over the last few years. The $150 million “Uptown Project" added many new retail, dining and entertainment venues to the neighborhood, plus nearly 150 new apartment units.
Other projects included a $66 million expansion of the Institute of Art, a new home and pedestrian plaza for the Museum of Contemporary Art, a University Hospital expansion and even Corner Alley, a unique two-story bowling alley.
If you're looking for a bit older and more down-to-earth experience, The Circle is also where you'll find Cleveland's Little Italy enclave, Murray Hill. The hamlet is dotted with authentic restaurants, bakeries and pizza shops along Mayfield Road (a former mafia stronghold), as well as several art galleries and boutiques and the 120-year old Holy Rosary Church.
And while 30,000 Clevelanders work in University Circle, 13,000 students matriculate here and 2.5 million visit the attractions here, there are only about 9,500 full-time residents. This demand has kept rents very high for this Midwest region, and they're only getting higher. In the past 12 months, rents have shot up to $1,853 for a one-bedroom apartment on average, up a whopping 44.28 percent.
We looked at all neighborhoods in Cleveland with sufficient available inventory on Apartment Guide and Rent.com and compared the average price from July 2018 to July 2019 to find the neighborhoods with the highest percentage increase in one-bedroom apartment prices.
The current rent information included in this article is based on rates as of July 1, 2019, for multifamily rental property inventory on ApartmentGuide.com and Rent.com and is for illustrative purposes only. The data contained herein does not constitute financial advice or a pricing guarantee for any apartment.