It’s not just your imagination if you think apartments are getting smaller while growing more expensive

Washington ranks in the top five among cities with high rents and shrinking apartments. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Consumers continue to complain about paying more for smaller portions at the grocery store — the money that used to get you one pound of coffee now buys an 11-ounce container of coffee. Renters may be feeling that same pinch, too.

A recent analysis by RENTCafé, a national apartment-search website, found that although rents have gone up, the average apartment size in the United States has shrunk by 5 percent in the past decade, down to 941 square feet in 2018. In that period, studio apartments have shrunk by more than 10 percent. The average new studio apartment is 514 square feet in 2018, down from 573 square feet in 2008.

While the average size of apartments has been shrinking for the past 10 years, overall rents have increased by 28 percent to $1,944.

Apartment sizes vary from market to market. While you might automatically think Northeastern cities such as New York have the smallest apartments, on a regional basis, California apartments are the smallest, at an average of 837 square feet.

The metropolitan areas with the smallest apartments include:

1. Seattle — 711 square feet

2. Manhattan — 733 square feet

3. Chicago — 733 square feet

4. Washington — 736 square feet

5. San Francisco — 737 square feet

If you want more space, you’ll need to move South, where the cities with the largest apartments are:

1. Tallahassee — 1,038 square feet

2. Marietta, Ga. — 1,025 square feet

3. Columbia, S.C. — 1,006 square feet

4. Decatur, Ga. — 1,000 square feet

5. Birmingham, Ala. — 992 square feet

For the full report, click here.

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