Psst! Your Neighbors May Be Paying Less Rent

According to a website that maps census data, rental prices in downtown Silver Spring vary—a lot.

Don't tell the people living west of East-West Highway, but folks to the east are paying hundreds less per month in rent. And east of Fenton Street? Prices go down even more. 

This is all according to the American Community Survey, a yearly product of the Census Bureau that helps local governments know key demographic information about residents. A website, www.richblockspoorblocks.com, plugged in the rental price numbers for 2007-2011 and created color-coded maps that show where people are paying the most to live. 

For downtown Silver Spring, the money district is a small, oddly shaped swath running to the east of 16th Street and Eastern Avenue, bounded by Newell Street to the South, East-West Highway to the east and the Metro tracks to the northeast. In this census tract (named 7026.01), the median rental price is $1,588.00, give or take about $58. (This census tract also include the Silver Spring Metro station and housing in the immediate vicinity.) 

That's about $300 more than the area to the east of the highway, where the median price for rent is $1,290. 

Frankly, though, everyone in downtown Silver Spring is paying a lot more than the state mid-range, said to be $877 to $1,072. 

Check out the maps, attached to this article, which show the census tracts colored in shades ranging from yellow to deep red. The darker the color, the more money paid in rent. Head to RichBlocksPoorBlocks.com to fool around with their widget and find out what our neighbors in other parts of the county pay. Not suprisingly, the areas super-close to Metrorail trains in all parts of the county were the most expensive. 

Here's a chart of the census tracts in the immediate downtown area, their corresponding boundaries and the median rent:

Census Tract

Corresponding Area

Media Rent


East of 16th St., West of East-West Highway



East of East-West Highway, West of Fenton St.



East of Fenton St., West of Piney Branch Rd.




West of 16th St., East of Grubb Rd.



East of Georgia Ave., South of the Beltway


What do you think? Is that about on-par with what you pay? 

Craig February 27, 2013 at 03:45 AM
Wow I feel like I am getting a raw deal looking at this map! Still... location off Blair Mill Drive can't be beat (or beat by few). Geez though! Gotta find something cheaper!
KatieSilverSpring February 27, 2013 at 11:50 AM
So what? isn't it logical that the closer you are to a subway, the more desirable the spot? the newer the place, the better the upkeep, the more expensive the spot. Why is this an issue? if you choose to live further out, you choose what you have chosen.
Whitney Teal February 27, 2013 at 03:38 PM
a lot of the info is really obvious. not saying it's an issue, just passing along the data for those interested.
Amy Johnson February 27, 2013 at 10:06 PM
Is this the average for apartments/complexes or Single Family Homes??
Whitney Teal February 28, 2013 at 04:33 PM
HI Amy, it's for all rental units within that census tract, so it would include apartments, homes, basements, etc.


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