Inland Empire rents rise 4.3%, topping 2.9% inflation rate

Inland Empire rents rose at a 4.3% annual rate in May vs. an overall 2.9% inflation rate for all goods and services, according to the local Consumer Price Index.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ new bimonthly index for Riverside and San Bernardino counties tracks the cost of living — including rents — by polling consumers about household expenses. Other frequently quoted rent measurements come from landlord surveys.

The Inland Empire’s rent increase has averaged 4.4% so far in 2019, fifth-highest among the 23 metro areas nationwide tracked by the CPI.

The latest CPI for Riverside and San Bernardino counties found overall housing costs — typically a consumer’s biggest expense — were up 3.8% in a year. Local inflation, minus shelter costs, was up 2.3% in this period.

As a regional comparison, the long-running CPI for Los Angeles and Orange counties showed rents in that two-county region rising in May at a 5.4% annual rate while overall L.A.-O.C. housing costs rose 4.3% in a year.

Here are other price trends for the Inland Empire in May from the CPI report …

1. How the I.E. compares: L.A.-O.C. inflation ran 3.1%, 3.8% in San Diego and 1.8% nationally.

2. Gasoline, all grades: Up 10.6% in a year. Meanwhile, household energy prices were up 1.7% in a year.

3. Food: At home, up 0.5% in a year. Dining out? Up 3.2% in a year.

4. Medical care: Up 1.6% in a year.

5. Big-ticket durables, such as furniture and appliances: Up 0.3% over 12 months.

6. Apparel: Down 6.2% in a year.

7. Recreation: Up 1.4% in a year.

FYI, size matters: Big metro areas in Western states saw consumer prices up at a 3% annual pace. Smaller Western communities? 2.8% inflation.

SOURCE: DAILY BREEZE

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