Special Report

The Most Expensive Countries to Rent an Apartment

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The affordability of rent can be an object lesson about the relative relationship between income and cost of living, especially when making these comparisons across countries. An expatriate with a stable income may find renting an apartment in Mexico to be a bargain relative to their wealth and income, while local residents struggle to cover basic costs of living.

This is important to consider when comparing the cost of renting across the globe as a globetrotting retiree or someone younger who is considering life abroad.

To identify the most expensive countries to rent a 1-bedroom apartment, 24/7 Wall St. relied on data from Numbeo, an online database of user-contributed data about cities and countries worldwide. Numbeo considered 109 countries.

Lebanon, which is suffering a catastrophic economic crisis right now, has among the world’s highest rent prices of the countries considered. But affordability is relative to the average local monthly income, and Lebanese people earn relatively lower wages, if they have a job at all. So while rent is astronomical to them, it might be a bargain to an outsider looking in.

Then there are economically stable and wealthy countries like Germany, where rent prices are also among the highest in the world. But the typical German earns relatively higher wages and can afford to pay the higher rent prices more easily thanks to better local wages and stronger social benefits. These are the richest countries in the world.

The United States ranks among the top 10 countries with the highest rent but also among the top 10 countries with the highest wages. This is the state where people are $5,000 behind on rent.

Here are the most expensive countries to rent a one-bedroom apartment.
Click here to see our detailed methodology.

Source: Ilari Nackel / iStock via Getty Images

25. Finland
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $849.80
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $676.34
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,787.14
> Population: 5,521,606

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24. Austria
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $851.35
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $677.97
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,403.65
> Population: 8,879,920

Source: eyewave / iStock via Getty Images

23. Belgium
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $853.20
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $720.72
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,443.17
> Population: 11,488,980

Source: elxeneize / iStock via Getty Images

22. Germany
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $864.38
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $649.66
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,946.10
> Population: 83,092,962

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21. Sweden
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $866.83
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $648.31
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,971.22
> Population: 10,278,887

20. Lebanon
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $895.00
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $443.82
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $1,049.19
> Population: 6,855,709

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19. Bahrain
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $897.29
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $632.04
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $1,562.60
> Population: 1,641,164

Source: dennissylvesterhurd / Flickr

18. Kuwait
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $909.57
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $730.74
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $1,892.80
> Population: 4,207,077

Source: ewg3D / E+ via Getty Images

17. Malta
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $992.73
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $811.70
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $1,305.38
> Population: 504,062

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16. United Kingdom
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,033.46
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $847.79
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,713.98
> Population: 66,836,327

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15. Israel
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,044.91
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $848.25
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,635.62
> Population: 9,054,000

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14. Denmark
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,055.87
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $755.34
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,589.79
> Population: 5,814,422

13. Canada
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,058.50
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $893.48
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,821.22
> Population: 37,593,384

Source: georgeclerk / iStock via Getty Images

12. New Zealand
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,128.42
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $880.31
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,864.82
> Population: 4,979,300

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11. Norway
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,139.33
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $895.89
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,408.46
> Population: 5,347,896

10. United Arab Emirates
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,187.51
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $782.93
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,749.60
> Population: 9,770,526

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9. Australia
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,207.13
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $925.45
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,559.37
> Population: 25,365,745

Source: dennism2 / Flickr

8. Netherlands
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,263.20
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $995.14
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,998.79
> Population: 17,344,874

Source: benedek / iStock via Getty Images

7. United States
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,331.56
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,082.48
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,558.71
> Population: 328,329,953

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6. Ireland
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,373.13
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,205.70
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,011.69
> Population: 4,934,340

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5. Iceland
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,459.92
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,242.80
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,286.04
> Population: 360,563

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4. Qatar
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,545.26
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,000.01
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,113.79
> Population: 2,832,071

Source: mikolajn / iStock via Getty Images

3. Switzerland
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $1,625.88
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,281.68
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $6,246.87
> Population: 8,575,280

Source: volvob12b / Flickr

2. Singapore
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $2,037.68
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,344.29
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $3,840.25
> Population: 5,703,569

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1. Hong Kong
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment in city center: $2,178.13
> Avg rent for 1-bedroom apartment outside of city center: $1,560.40
> Avg monthly salary after taxes: $2,968.14
> Population: 7,507,400

Methodology

To identify the most expensive countries to rent a 1-bedroom apartment, 24/7 Wall St. relied on prices by country obtained on Aug. 17, 2021 from Numbeo — an online database of user-contributed data about cities and countries worldwide. Numbeo shows average monthly rents for 1-bedroom apartments in the city center and outside the city center for 109 countries with sufficient numbers of contributors. 

The average monthly net salary, after taxes, in each country was also obtained from Numbeo on Aug. 17, 2021. Population figures came from the World Bank and are for 2019, the latest year for which data was available. 

Numbeo aggregates data for countries in real time. Data may be subject to change over relatively shorter periods of time compared to government data sets. 

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