A Resource for Finding a Rental Home in the Portland Metro Area

This page is offered as a resource for people looking for a rental (Apartment, Condo, or Detached Single-Family Home)

We DO NOT Handle Rentals as most Oregon Realtors are licensed
to Work Only with Buyers and Sellers


It’s not easy to find a place to live in a city if you’re just moving into the city. I have done this a number of times so I can relate to the difficulties. Here are some ideas that will help you in your search. The suggestions are targeted for living within the city of Portland.

The Average Apartment Rental Cost in the Portland Area. 

According to the Rent Jungle website, as of January 2018, the average rent for an apartment in Portland, OR is $1,577 which is a 0.57% decrease from last year when the average rent was $ 1,586, and a 0.25% increase from last month when the average rent was $1,573. One bedroom apartments in Portland rent for $1,476 a month on average (a 0.88% increase from last year) and two bedroom apartment rents average $1,785 (a 1.62% increase from last year). 

Here are the latest numbers of Portland rental costs from the Numbeo website:

  • Apartment (one bedroom) in city center:  $1,541.09 
  • Apartment (one bedroom) outside of center:  $1,147.39
  • Apartment (three bedrooms) in city center:  $1,854.41
  • Apartment (three bedrooms) outside of center:  $1,858.72

Numbeo claims to be the world’s largest database of user contributed data about cities and countries worldwide. Numbeo provides current information on world living conditions including the cost of living, housing indicators, health care, traffic, crime, and pollution.

Seattle and San Francisco Rental Costs

The numbers for Seattle and San Francisco from the Rent Jungle website as of January 2018 are as follows. The average rent for an apartment in Seattle is $2,085 which is a 1.97% decrease from last year when the average rent was $2,126, and a 0.67% increase from last month when the average rent was $2,071. One bedroom apartments in Seattle rent for $1,964 a month on average (a 0.92% increase from last year) and two bedroom apartment rents average $2,684 (a 1.94% decrease from last year). As of January 2018, the average rent for an apartment in San Francisco is $3,670 which is a 5.48% decrease from last year when the average rent was $3,871, and a 1.25% increase from last month when the average rent was $3,624. One bedroom apartments in San Francisco rent for $3,405 a month on average (a 0.06% decrease from last year) and two bedroom apartment rents average $4,492 (a 3.09% decrease from last year). 

Numbeo’s rent for a one bedroom apartment in San Francisco (city center) is $3,294.54 and for a three bedroom apartment in city center, the price is $5,996.88. Seattle costs are higher than Portland’s but lower than San Francisco:  $2,007.44 for a one bedroom and $3,600.89 for a three bedroom (both city center).

City of Portland and the State of Oregon Rental Regulations

In Oregon, renters are only required to receive a 30-day notice if they’ve been in their unit less than one year, or 60 days for renters with more longevity.

The Oregon State Residential Landlord & Tenant Act is a part of Oregon State civil law. Civil law, or common law, is generally used to help private citizens, such as landlords and renters resolve disputes or collect for damages done by the other party. Landlord-tenant laws, such as the ones found in the Oregon State Residential Landlord & Tenant Act, are enforced by landlords or renters. For example: when a landlord seeks to remove a renter for non-payment of rent, or damage to the rental property, they will seek to remove the renter by eviction via civil court. Conversely, when a renter seeks to enforce habitability laws or settle disputes with the landlord, they can take the landlord to court to settle the dispute. 

The City of Portland Requires 90 Day No-Cause Eviction 

The City of Portland requires landlords to give a 90 days’ notice before no-cause evictions or rent increases of 5 percent or more went into effect on November 13, 2016. The rule applies to tenants who rent month to month — except for those who live in the same home as the property owner. Those renters will get 30 days’ notice if they’ve been there less than 12 months, 60 days’ if longer. 

Multnomah County where the City of Portland is located has an excellent handbook (Rent Right) on rental laws and regulations that you can download by clicking here.

Below are other resources:

  • Oregon Landlord and Tenant Laws  This is the Oregon Bar website information on landlord-tenant laws.
  • HUD  This federal government agency handles complaints about housing discrimination, bad landlords in federal housing and many other issues.
  • Nolo.com  A good overview of Oregon landlord-tenant laws.
  • Landlordology  Although primarily for landlords, the site is worth a visit as it covers many of the topics pertaining to rentals.

City of Portland Relocation Assistance

On February 2, 2018, the Portland City Council passed a milestone that mandates relocation assistance for involuntarily displaced tenants. Ordinance 188219 requires landlords to provide relocation assistance if they enact no-cause evictions or increase rent by 10 percent or more in a 12-month period. The amount tenants can receive depends on the size of their living space ($2,900 for a studio, $3,300 for one-bedroom units, $4,200 for two-bedroom units, and $4,500 for three-bedroom units or larger).

The Relocation Assistance Fact Sheet contains answers to many questions.

Portland Monthly Magazine Annual Neighborhood Guide

The Portland Monthly magazine features neighborhoods in their April issue every year. It has a ton of information about neighborhoods to include their pick of the best neighborhoods for the year. Although it’s focus is on home buyers and sellers the information about neighborhoods can be very helpful in finding a place to call home. In the 2014 issue, they started providing the median gross rent for each of the 90 plus Portland neighborhoods — a helpful number for renters.

To help those in the housing market, the magazine combines all the data from 120 neighborhoods and communities in the Portland metro area. Include in the story are median gross rent, crime statistics, parks, commuting information to include bus routes lines as well as the number of light rail/streetcar lines, and miles of bike lanes.

To check the magazine’s website stories and numbers visit their Real Estate section — click on “Neighborhoods” to view the numbers for the Portland 90 plus neighborhoods and click on “Suburbs” for the numbers in suburban communities in the metro area.

Rental Resources

Another place to start your search for a rental is Next Portland. The site is dedicated to making it easier to discover what’s being built in Portland. The site includes multi-family residential, retail, cultural buildings, educational building, hotel and other large projects. Also included are new buildings and major alterations/additions to old buildings. We do not include single-family residential, tenant improvements, or minor alterations/additions.

  • Portland Maps  Once you have obtained an address from an ad or by searching different rentals websites such as Craig’s List, visit Portland Maps to learn more about the neighborhood and community.  All you have to do is insert the address and you can obtain a wealth of information. Information provided: neighborhood data, crime statistics, aerial photos, elevation, schools, parks, zoning maps, water/sewer, natural hazard, etc.
  • School Report Cards   The quality of the schools in a neighborhood will tell you a lot about the neighborhood so make certain you check out the school report card at the Oregon Department of Education website. Each property in Portland Maps will show the public schools (elementary, middle, high school) associated with the address.  You should also visit The Oregonian’s website as it has an online reference guide where visitors can search by a number of variables to obtain test scores, federal ratings, school demographics, staffing, and finances.
  • City of Portland Neighborhood Information  There is 95 officially recognized Portland, Oregon neighborhoods. Each is represented by a volunteer-based neighborhood association which serves as a liaison between residents of the neighborhood and the city government, as coordinated by the city’s Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI). You will find the following at the city website: directory of contacts for neighborhood associations, business district associations, a map displaying all the 95 neighborhoods, a map of each neighborhood association, and links to neighborhood associations websites.
  • Portland Bridges  The site has good coverage on neighborhoods from someone who lives in Portland and knows his way around town.
  • Public Transportation  Visit the Portland area regional transit system called TriMet and use their “Trip Tools” to determine public transportation (MAX Light Rail and Bus) routes and times. Just insert your starting address, destination address, and time you want to travel.
  • Sex Offenders  ORS 181.592 authorizes the Oregon State Police to make information about registered sex offenders available to the public. Information is only provided for sex offenders who have been designated as predatory, as provided in ORS 181.585, who have also been determined to present the highest risk of re-offending and to require the widest range of notification; or found to be a sexually violent dangerous offender under ORS 144.635. Visit the public website at Sex Offenders Oregon. An address of a property is needed to complete a search.
  • Apartment by Commute Time  Walk Score has a new feature on their site that helps you find apartments by commute time. Whether you prefer driving, public transit, walking, or biking, Walk Score can help you find a commute that fits your lifestyle. Enter your work (or school) address, select your preferred mode of transportation, and set the time slider to how long you’re willing to commute. Apartment listings from craigslist are automatically sorted by estimated commute time and can be further filtered by Walk Score, price, and size.

Mapping Sites

  • Walk Score Apartment Search  Walk Score Apartment Search lets you find apartments by commute time on public transit, driving, biking, and walking. Walk Score’s apartment listings come from craigslist.org and they use a variety of data sources to calculate commute times. Their public transit data covers over 200 cities (including Portland, Oregon), where transit agencies have published their schedule data in an open format. If you can’t search for apartments by public transit time in your city visit citygoround.org to support open data.
  • Prometheus  Prometheus is the largest private owner of multi-family properties in the San Francisco Bay Area. The firm’s portfolio is comprised of properties throughout the Western United States. They list over 18,000 Bay Area, Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles Metropolitan area apartments.
  • PadMapper  PadMapper is like Google for finding rentals. It’s a free site that lets you search by location through home rental listings from a large number of different sources, including Craigslist, Apartments.com, ApartmentFinder.com, and others.
  • HotPads:  Rent or Buy? Map it to Find Out!  In these uncertain times, people weighing rent vs. buy may find help with heat maps on HotPads. Visitors can create customized, color-coded state and city data maps ranging from population density to per-capita income to median rents. One of the most useful heat maps is the rent ratio, which is an area’s median home price divided by the median annual rent. The lower the number — and the bluer the color on the map — the better to buy. The higher the number — and the redder the color — the better to rent. Green and yellow are in between the extremes. To see how the nation’s housing bubble affects your area, HotPads offers what it says are the first interactive maps of the crisis. In the Portland area, foreclosure heat maps color the city mostly blue or green, indicating it has mostly escaped the bubble. Newberg, in contrast, is nearly red, indicating a high foreclosure rate.

Referral Services

  • Apartments.com  The national site that offers apartments in most USA metro areas including Portland.  You have to complete a number of parameters (e.g., size, rent price, location, etc.) before you can obtain any listings.
  • The Apartment Finder  Magazine with a website that offers interactive maps, virtual tours, and a map-based keyword search tool.
  • The Apartment Guide  You can search by cities within Oregon and by zip code.
  • Craig’s List  National site that posts lists (e.g., services, for sale items, events, etc.) in major metro areas in the U.S.A.  It usually has over 400 rentals in the Portland Metro area.H
  • My Apartment Map  They plot available and affordable housing on an interactive map across the U.S. so that seekers can easily find housing near their desired location. They show nearby grocery stores, schools, public transportation, and other amenities.
  • Portland Apartment Finder  Portland Apartment Finder specializing in relocation to the Portland Oregon area as well as other places in the U.S.
  • Portland Apartment Finder Relocation Service  Local firm that specializes in helping people find an apartment, condo, or loft to rent in a Portland neighborhood.
  • Rental Ads  Apartments, home rentals, condos, townhomes and other properties for rent in Portland.
  • Rental Data  A service that matches renters with landlords based on their area, bedrooms, price, dwelling type and pet preference.  Over 4,000 listing in the Portland metro area.
  • Rentlingo   Free nationwide service that pulls up-to-date apartment availability from multiple sources and integrates reviews and gives users the option to connect to Facebook to see more social insights on the area and the property.
  • Smoke Free Rentals  The Portland-Vancouver Metro Area Smokefree Housing Campaign is working with landlords and property managers to encourage them to adopt no-smoking rules for their buildings.  This website will answer frequently asked questions, show you how to make quick fixes, how to talk to your landlord, describe your rights, and help you find non-smoking housing.

Apps for Finding a Rental

  • Walk Score allows you to find apartments and rentals and see the Walk Score of any address. Walk Score calculates the walkability of any location and shows you a map of nearby restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores, schools, and more. Walk Score lets you search for apartments and homes for rent from leading sites including Apartment Finder, Apartments.com, HotPads, MyNewPlace, Realtor.com, Trulia, etc. Available for both the iPhone and Android.
  • Apartment List is a Webby-award winning site draws over 1.7 million monthly visitors and lists over 600,000 available rentals.
  • Rentals are the runner-up for the essential apartment hunting app. The app has by far the best user interface of any of the apartment hunting apps. The app simply did not have as many listings as the essential one. If the app had a better database of listings, then it would have been the one app to have. The app has all of the typical features you will find in apartment hunter apps. Rentals is a good free option for those searching for their new home.

Extended Stay Apartments

  • A&G Rental Management  A&G has a number of units in the downtown area for short-term and long-term rental. One of the buildings is the Harrison Condos which is an ideal location (just south of downtown between 1st and 2nd Avenues on SW Harrison) with the streetcar line running in front of the three buildings. Telephone (503) 241-0676.
  • Bridgestreet Worldwide  A corporate housing and furnished apartments company with properties in the US and all around the world. In addition to apartments in the Portland area, Bridgestreet also represents the Kearney Plaza and the Burlington Tower in the Pearl neighborhood.
  • Execustay  222 S.W. Harrison, Suite G02, Portland, OR 97201. Telephone (503) 499-6625 or (206) 889-0866 . Fax (503) 499-6626. Execustay, a division of Marriott Hotels, has six locations in the Portland metro area.
  • Oakwood  Oakwood is the world’s largest rental housing solution company, providing furnished and unfurnished accommodations throughout North and South America, the United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia. It has over 700 units for rent in the Portland metro area – many are in downtown. Call (503) 582-9229.
  • U.S. Suites, Inc  10220 S.W. Nimbus, Suite K-7, Portland, OR 97223. Telephone (503) 443-2033 or (800) 877-8483. Fax (503) 620-8593.

Property Managers

  • American Property Management  2154 N.E. Broadway. Telephone (503) 281-7779. APM offers free apartment information and has more than 300 complexes to choose from. They cover a wide range of neighborhoods in the metro area.
  • Bluestone & Hockley  (800) 859-8043 or 503) 222-3800. The office is at 3835 SW Kelly Avenue, Portland, OR 97239-4312. Over 30 years in business and over 1800 residential and commercial management units.
  • Gearin Properties  Located in Beaverton. Telephone (503) 626-7544. Home rentals on the west side (SW Portland, Beaverton, Hillsboro, Tigard).
  • College Housing Northwest  CHNW is a 501 (C) (3) private, non-profit corporation headquartered in Portland, Oregon. CHNW provides an educational living environment for students, faculty, and staff of PSU and other institutions of higher education.
  • Dwell Management  This Portland rental services manages rental properties in and around Portland, Oregon. Rental properties include single bedroom apartments, rowhouses, and large homes. Dwell Management is pet-friendly in all of their rental properties. They also manage rental office space.
  • The Management Group  (TMG), founded in 1985, is a full-service management company for residential and commercial properties, including single family homes, apartment communities, office and retail property. They service the Vancouver, Washington, and Portland, Oregon metro areas. You can search for apartments online at their site.
  • Performance Properties  Located in 1637 Laurel Street, Lake Oswego, OR 97034. Telephone: (503)635-0099. Their tenant screen criteria (credit reports, criminal, civil, rental & employment history) helps find qualified tenants who will pay rent on time and respect your property.

Vacation Rentals

  • VRBO has 265,000+ properties in 100 countries.

Pearl District Lofts and Condos

Northwest District/Nob Hill Apartments

  • Best Portland Rentals has numerous multi-family building in Northwest District (Nob Hill) as well as one unit in Johns Landing. Address: PO Box 10559 Portland, OR 97296-0559. Telephone: (503) 274-4066 .
  • The Park 19 opened in the summer of 2009 and they are located on NW 19th at Hoyt/Glisan.

Pet-Friendly Rentals

  • Portland Pooch  The website has a list of apartments (over 300) in the metro area that welcomes pets. It also a resource for other pet-related items such as hotels/motels that accept pets, boarding of pets, training, vets, etc.
  • CraigsList  You can search for apartments in the Portland metro area that allow dogs and cats.

Search the Newspapers Online

  • OregonLive  This site is affiliated with The Oregonian (state’s largest newspaper). You can search for all types of rentals.
  • Portland Tribune  Portland’s free publication is on the newsstands every Friday. They have a few rental properties listed.
  • Willamette Weekly  Alternative tabloid-style newspaper published weekly. They have a rental search capability on their website.

Apartment Ratings

ApartmentRatings.com exists to help renters share their renting experiences and give apartment hunters the information necessary to make an informed renting decision. You can search by city or Zip Code. Opinions from renters (and previous renters) are offered as well as pricing reports.

The site gives an overall score (percentage of people recommending the building) and ratings are based on the following with scores for each (1 – 5 with one being the lowest) item:

  • Parking
  • Maintenance
  • Construction
  • Noise
  • Grounds
  • Safety

Oregon Affordable Housing

Low-Cost Rental Housing Searchable Database  The site provides information by Oregon county on affordable housing projects. Each project displays the following information:

  • Name of project and address
  • Management agent name and phone number
  • Contact name and phone number
  • Number of units in project

New York Times Rent-Buy Tool

NYTimes_Economix1The New York Times has a tool to break down the rent-buy equation. They used real-estate data to compare two similar houses in the same region — one for sale and one for rent. They tried to take into account all the costs and benefits of owning, including property taxes, the tax deduction for mortgage interest, and condo fees where applicable. You’ll find a list of these factors inside their newly updated interactive calculator for comparing renting and buying. More to the point, the calculator will also let you do your own comparisons.

If you’re not up for doing the full calculation, you can fall back on a rough rule of thumb. Take the cost of a house for a sale and divide it by the annual rent for a similar house. If this ratio — which we call the rent ratio — is above 20, you should at least consider renting. If the ratio is well below 20, the case for buying becomes a lot stronger.

American Bankers Association tells you what size mortgage you could get if your money were going toward a house payment instead of rent.

Oregon Housing and Community Services

  • Oregon Housing and Community Services  (OHCS) is the State of Oregon’s housing finance agency, providing financial and program support to create and preserve opportunities for quality, affordable housing for Oregonians of lower and moderate income. OHCS also administers federal and state antipoverty, homeless and energy assistance, and community service programs.
  • The Consolidated Funding Cycle  (CFC) application is an open, competitive process to efficiently distribute limited grant and tax credit funds for affordable, multi-unit, rental housing development. Applications are accepted twice a year, during the Spring and Fall cycles.
  • Oregon Community Alliance of Tenants  Formed in 1996, the Community Alliance of Tenants (CAT) is Oregon’s only statewide, grassroots, tenant-controlled, tenant rights organization.  CAT educates, organizes and develops the leadership of low-income tenants to directly challenge unjust housing policies and practices.