Sky-high rent is one of the biggest complaints in our community, but with rising vacancy rates in one particular part of Northern Colorado, we could potentially see a continuing dip in rent.

According to the Boulder Daily Camera, some housing industry professionals believe there could possibly be a trend in dropping rental rates in Boulder County. Simon Heart, owner of All County Boulder Property Management tells the publication that they've "started noticing properties sitting longer than usual, and actually needing some lower rental rates in order to attract tenants."

"We target to lease properties within 30 days, but within the last month or 2, there are properties that have been sitting for 30-60 days that we've had to lower the rent several times (to fill)," said Heart.

[Editor's note: A good chunk of us consider Boulder County to be Northern Colorado, so yes, Boulder County is part of Northern Colorado in this case.]

Owner of Smiley & Associates, Chrissy Smiley, also believes "something's about to flip" in the rental market.

"I just feel there is some kind of sea change happening with the rental market," she told the Daily Camera. "Part of it is that rents are going up and people's incomes aren't going up at the same rate."

Where a "normal" city vacancy rate would fall around 3%, Boulder County's vacancy rates are a bit higher. According to the Apartment Association of Metro Denver, current vacancy rates in Boulder County are as follows:

  • Boulder (excludes university area) - 7.2% vacancy; $1,649 average rent (falling 8% from $1,799 since early 2016)
  • Boulder County (excludes Boulder and Longmont) - 6.9% vacancy; $1,572 average rent
  • Longmont - 4.4% vacancy; $1,285 average rent

Compare those rates to that of Fort Collins from early 2016, which was 0.2% vacancy. Median rent in Fort Collins was around $1,400 as of February 2016 according to the Coloradoan.

There are a number of factors that could be playing into rising vacancy rates, from struggle with affordability to the addition of 635 apartments in Boulder last year. Vacancies also historically tend to rise in the fall, so it could just be a short-term trend that people are noticing. Either way, while these numbers definitely fluctuate, the rise in vacancy is something to take note of because it could mean a great thing for those of us trying to save money on rent.

So will rents go down? Looks like they have been lately. But will this trend continue? Oh, we can only hope.