Zillow calculates by market, the total amount paid in multifamily and single-family for rent payments.
Zerbor Old metal sign with the inscription For Rent; Shutterstock ID 241164931

Half-a-trillion dollars and counting. That's starting to add up to some real money that the nation's 43 million people paying to live in rental households--about evenly-split between multifamily units and single-family for-rent properties--forked over in 2015.

Zillow senior economist Aaron Terrazas notes that about two-thirds of the total rent paid nationwide in 2015 was paid by renters in the country’s 50 largest metro areas. He writes, zeroing in geographically:

New York-area renters spent a combined $56 billion on rent in 2015, followed by Los Angeles-area renters (almost $35 billion spent cumulatively on rent in 2015) and San Francisco-area renters (who spent about $17 billion on rent). At the other end of the list of the largest 50 metros, Salt Lake City renters spent about $800 million cumulatively on rent, Louisville renters spent about $1.2 billion and New Orleans and Birmingham renters each spent about $1.4 billion.

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