Where Can College Graduates Afford To Rent?

This post was written and contributed by Kristy Hessman. Hessman writes for HotPads, a rental search website that makes it easy for you to find your next place in the city.

Whether you are a parent of a student, or a student who identifies as a Longhorn, Jaguar, Horned Frog or Red Raider, graduation season is coming up quickly.

But where will new grads head after school? Many new graduates will be saying goodbye to their college towns and hello to cities like Dallas to start new jobs.

A new interactive map out from the rental website HotPads helps new college graduates determine some of the most affordable neighborhoods to rent in within the Dallas metro area.

HotPads used salary information for full time workers ages 22 to 30 with college degrees, along with rental data to map just how much recent grads can expect to spend of their gross salaries on rent.

Here is a snapshot of what the rental market looks like for graduates in certain professions moving to Dallas.


According to the data, new graduates with teaching degrees moving to Dallas will likely earn between $44,000 and $45,000 in annual gross salary. The City Center District will be the most expensive place for teachers to rent. They’ll spend around $1,158 each month on rent, about 35 percent of their annual salary. If they want to save some money, they can head to Preston Hollow where they will spend 16 percent, about $590 a month, of their income rent.


Graduates going into accounting or auditing roles will have a bit more flexibility when it comes to the Dallas rental market thanks to their slightly higher salary of around $54,000 a year. This will allow them to live closer to the action in neighborhoods like Oak Lawn or Near East, where they will spend 24 and 27 percent of their respective rents on salary.

Software Developers, Applications and Systems Software

Graduates in the software and systems fields will have even more flexibility than accountants and teachers due to their estimated $61,894 annual gross salary. That means they can live in the more expensive neighborhoods of Dallas, like City Center District and South Boulevard Park – Park Row District and still spend less than 30 percent of their salaries on rent.

Along with Dallas, HotPads created maps for 10 additional cities throughout the US, including: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington DC.

Recent graduates can choose their profession and search neighborhoods within those cities to see how much they can expect to pay in rent.

HotPads also compiled a Rent Here Not There “cheat sheet” for new grads moving to cities throughout the US.

You can explore all of the cities by profession by clicking here.

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