Phoenix renters caught a slight break in May, as average rents decreased slightly from the high reached in April, according to Axiometrics, the leader in apartment and student housing market intelligence.

Average effective rent for Phoenix apartments was $979 per unit per month in May, $2 less than April’s $981 but $40 higher than May 2016’s figure. That year-over-year increase translated to 4.3% annual effective rent growth, a slight 0.2 percentage point decrease from the previous month and a 3.7-percentage-point drop from the previous year.

Some moderation in the market can be expected given the recent drop in job growth – the rate was 1.1% for April, slightly below the 1.4% national figure. Meanwhile, levels of new supply are high, with 7,076 new units identified for 2017 delivery.   

“Phoenix’s current rent growth rate might not have been impressive a year ago, but the overall moderation of the apartment market places it among the strongest performing metros in the nation,” said Jay Denton, vice president of analytics for Axiometrics, a RealPage company. “However, occupancy is trending downward, which may limit the ability for strong rent increases later in the year.”