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Highlights: Recent Studies Try to Make Sense of Atlanta Rents

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Is it increasing or decreasing? Who's on first?

Right now, every manner of apartment listing site and multifamily think-tank is sending studies from all over the country that take a stab at the cause for rising or lowering rental costs and whether or not rent is affordable in each city.

When it comes to metro Atlanta, we've heard it all recently: Rents are still increasing. No, rents are decreasing. Atlanta is still amazingly affordable. No, Atlanta is officially a playground for hedge-funders.

Here's a sampling of analyses that've come across the wires just this month:

The folks at apartment listing site Radpad studied more than 150,000 apartment listings on its platform, calculating what percentage of monthly salaries will be going toward paying for rent for young professionals in each city. In Atlanta, the study showed, "newbies in A-town" can expect to spend about 36 percent of their entry-level salaries on rent. That put A-town on the better end of the rent-to-salary spectrum, as opposed to places like New York where young renters can expect to spend as much as 77 percent of their income on an apartment.

However ... this Rent Cafe study was just lamenting the growing shortage of affordable rentals in ATL.

And then, there's this, the ABODO National Apartment Report, in which research says Atlanta experienced a 3-percent decrease in rent prices from April to May 2016 — the ninth largest decrease in the entire U.S. among other large cities.

Meanwhile, Apartment List posted a compendium of reasons why apartments generally cost more for city dwellers, which doesn't have numbers but may offer some kind of explanation?

So, where the renting landscape stands in Atlanta is a matter of perspective right now. This is getting confusing.