New developments continue to be sluggish in Colorado real estate, a factor that’s helped push apartment vacancies down and rental rates higher, according to a state housing division study that finds average rents are up to $870 a month, an increase of $30 from one year ago (via the Denver Business Journal). The toughest places to find an apartment are Boulder and Fort Collins, with the latter at a vacancy rate of 2.8 percent. Compare those to Denver’s rate of 5.3 percent, which is down from 7.4 percent last year. The priciest place to rent is in Eagle County, home to Vail and Beaver Creek, at $1,120 a month on average. The most affordable places are Sterling ($322) and northwest Pueblo ($428).

The overall state vacancy rate is 5.5 percent, the lowest level since 2001, notes INDenverTimes. “I think rates are going to continue to fall,” says Gordon Von Stroh, a University of Denver business professor and the author of the study. “That will be especially true if we see any improvement in the job situation.”