PACE — Residents who rent their home in Pace get the second cheapest rates in the nation, according to Apartmentguide.com, but one local researcher questions the data.

Pace was the second most affordable town in the nation for one-bedroom apartment rentals during November 2016, according to the website that primarily features rental listings. However, an economics researcher with the University of West Florida disputes the results.

Kari Lloyd’s apartmentguide.com article, “The Top 50 Cheapest Places to Rent an Apartment in America,” lists rental prices as “Average Rent,” with Pace at $309.

“I can say without much doubt that Pace is not the second cheapest city in the country in terms of rent,” said Zach Jenkins said, director of UWF’s Haas Center for Business Research and Economic Development.

Using www.zillow.com, a real estate and rental marketplace with its own data, Jenkins found Pace ranks 6,307 out of 13,140 cities.

“Milton is ranked number 4,148,” he said.

Milton’s rental price came in at $644, Gulf Breeze at $862 and Navarre at $1,011, according to Lloyd. However, her email listed this as the Average Low Price.

“This data reflects the average of the maximum low price of all active listings on Apartment Guide for Milton, Fla.; Gulf Breeze, Fla.; and Navarre, Fla,” she wrote.

When considering the larger region, the Pensacola Metropolitan Statistical Area is more affordable than its neighbors, according to Jenkins.

“Rental affordability, which is the ratio of the median income of a region to the median rental price, lists the Pensacola MSA (Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties) as the 128th most affordable out of 303 MSAs in the dataset. 

“It is the most affordable MSA in the state of Florida according to this metric,” Jenkins said.