Ever since I landed in this beautiful place over 20 years ago, I noticed right away the lack of affordable housing. Not only does the average person have to compete with other residents trying to find a decent place to live, but this is also a town with lots of college students also in need of housing, so it can be tough to find the ideal place that you can afford.

Now to be fair, things have improved somewhat in terms of options. There have been lots of new apartment buildings that have been built, especially over the last few years. Are these affordable to the average person in Duluth, though? I did buy a home in Duluth many years ago and so I was out of the rental game for a while, but in that process, I adopted a few animals which down the road has made finding a place to rent even more difficult.

This past summer I was on the hunt for a place to live with two small dogs. It was incredibly frustrating to discover (which I knew would be the case) to find a place to rent especially with more than one dog. I understand how many landlords and management companies have gotten burned in the past by bad pet owners and tenants who ruin it for the rest of us and we have to pay the price, but it really narrows down the field of what you can rent.

Thankfully many of these new developments do allow pets with special pet deposits and generally a monthly pet rental, which I totally understand and gladly will pay. I am glad to see this is starting to change since many people do own pets who need to rent a place to live

One such new development like this is the Lincoln Park Flats apartments in Duluth, which brought a much-needed place in that area for housing and the apartments are brand new and very nice. Opened almost a year now, the residents on the second floor of the building are now being told they have to move to make way for a new boutique hotel.

Although tenants have been offered other apartments in the building WDIO spoke with one of the tenants named Grace and she said:

So it was very shocking, I will say, was the initial feeling of it. I think it would have been worth mentioning right when they first opened the apartment complex, because they would have mentioned, Hey, this first year is just kind of going to be a trial run. Then I think all of us would have been a lot more understanding and would have not come as such a shock to us.

Thankfully they have other open apartments, but as we all know it is a hassle to move even if it is up a floor or two. But for Grace, the other apartments were more expensive than she is willing or can afford to pay for every month, so she is forced to move elsewhere. Again this a beautiful, brand-new complex but for some, the rent is out of reach. On Apartments.com at Lincoln Park Flats, a Studio is $1,130 at 508 sq ft and a one-bedroom is $1,455 a month at 660 sq ft.

According to rent.com, the rent listed above is pretty average for Duluth. As of 2023, the rent for a 1 bedroom apartment in Duluth ranges anywhere from $630 - $1532. When it comes to the average rate in Duluth, it is on the high end at $1532, so Lincoln Park Flats is actually under the high end of the average price.

So what percentage of apartments in the area are available at what price? Again according to rent.com, as of 2023: Apartments for $501-$700 is 2% of the market $701-$1,000 is 12% of the market $1001-%1,500 is 30% of the market $1501-$2101 is 32 % of the market and $2101 + is 24%.

So with all these new apartment complexes being built and older downtown buildings being converted into apartments, this is on average what residents can expect to pay in rent. And much older apartments to are now up in price as well due to market forces at work. So while there are more apartments available, again how affordable is it for the average person? Hopefully, your job has a cost of living increase available to you or you will be spending the majority of your income on rent.

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