The Cost To Rent An Apartment In Europe Is Laughably Cheap - InvestingChannel

The Cost To Rent An Apartment In Europe Is Laughably Cheap

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The Cost To Rent An Apartment In Europe Is Laughably Cheap

Before we get into today’s meaty subject, expect a series on international ETF investing soon. Because today’s Juice focuses on Europe, we asked Trackstar, our proprietary sentiment indicator, to tell us about the most-searched ETFs focused on the continent. We took a gander at the results and think it will be interesting to apply some of the methods we use to dissect domestic ETFs to foreign ones. 

We have big plans for The Juice to wrap up 2023 (yeah, it’s almost October!) and start 2024 strong. So, stay tuned and tell a friend or lover.

Anyway, in Monday’s Juice we consider—relatively speaking—the cost of rent in the United States of America:

First, to be able to afford the median rent nationwide of $2,052, as of August, you need to earn $6,840 a month, or $82,080 a year, if you’d like to keep your payment at 30% of your pre-tax income. 

With the median weekly for full-time wage and salary workers in the United States at $1,163.41 in the government’s latest report, we’re talking just under $56,000 a year. 

It’s not too tough to see how those numbers add up. 

Of course, it’s all relative. Based on quite a few factors, but particularly location and income. Two variables that have a relationship meaningful to this discussion. Chances are you might make more money in New York City or San Francisco or Boston than you would doing the same job in St. Louis or Cincinnati. 

You can apply similar it’s all relative thinking when you consider the cost to rent in Europe. As an American making American money from an American company, rent in Europe looks dirt cheap. Relative to what you pay—in relation to your earnings—in the United States

Check out the top ten most expensive average rents in Europe (in euros) with the year-over-year increase or decrease in parenthesis:

  • Lisbon, Portugal: 2,500 (+25%)
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands: 2,300 (+18%)
  • Utrecht, Netherlands: 1,950 (+26%)
  • Paris, France: 1,802 (-6%)
  • Munich, Germany: 1,755 (+4%)
  • Milan, Italy: 1,750 (-3%)
  • Berlin, Germany: 1,748 (+4%)
  • The Hague, Netherlands: 1,725 (+28%)
  • Florence, Italy: 1,700 (+21%)
  • Barcelona, Spain: 1,580 (+9)

Another notable is Budapest, Hungary where the 1,100 average rent represents a 43% year-over-year pop. 

No doubt, tourism plays a role, but also foreigners making foreign money, who are able to work from anywhere, thus helping to drive up the cost of renting an apartment. 

If you’re American—or maybe Canadian, as Canada also has insanely expensive rents—this is a sweet deal. Your dollar, even when it’s somewhat weak, can take you much further in Europe from a cost of living standpoint. 

However, if you’re European, earning the median wage in your country, you’re in a similar boat to Americans at the median. 

Consider now, some average salaries (annual/monthly in euros) from across Europe, including some of the places on the rent list: 

  • Paris: 54,100/4,508
  • Amsterdam: 52,000/4,333 
  • The Hague: 50,000/4,167
  • Utrecht: 47,000/3,917
  • Barcelona: 38,226/3,185

Across the eurozone, the 2,111 euros a month, as of Q1/2023. 

Here again—all together now—it’s all relative! 

If you’re making 4,500 a month in Paris and want to rent the average apartment at 1,800, you’re committing 40% of your pretax income to housing. Just as we toggle the lever between income, rents and location in the U.S. you can do the same exercise—on your own time(!)—in Europe and elsewhere. 


The Bottom Line: All of this to say, it’s all relative … everywhere. And, to take things a step further, it’s not only a haves and have nots economy in the United States. We’re most definitely living in a haves and have nots world. Money talks and … you know what walks. 

That said, we do a lot here at The Juice. But we’re hardly qualified to solve the world’s problems. So, while we will eventually consider international investing, tomorrow we return our attention stateside. And we take a look at one of the first times we have seen big bank executives admit that, yes, The Juice is right, it sure does look like a dichotomous, haves and have nots economy! 

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