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Nation's Capital is The Capital City for College Grads

graduation . / Credit: College Graduation Image via Shutterstock

Recent college graduates who are looking for their first job and apartment may want to start searching in the nation's capital. That’s because in a new survey, Washington, D.C., took the top spot as the best city for recent college graduates based on employment opportunities, salary and rent for a one-bedroom apartment.

Graduates who start looking in the nation's capital can expect to pay nearly $1,700 a month for a one-bedroom apartment. There is good news for recent graduates, though, as more than half of all employers are planning to hire graduates this year. This year's number was up 8 percent from the past year. 

"While the competition remains tough, job prospects for recent college graduates have improved this year," said Michael Erwin, director of corporate communications for CareerBuilder. "The key is pinpointing those markets that not only have the greatest demand for your skill sets, but match areas of interest."

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The Big Apple and Boston followed Washington, D.C., taking home the second and third spots respectively in the survey. Graduates in those cities, however, can expect to pay around $1,800 in rent for a one-bedroom apartment. The rest of the list included:

  • Minneapolis  ($974 rent)
  • Dallas ($912 rent)
  • Atlanta ($855 rent)
  • Chicago ($1,224 rent)
  • Houston ($910 rent)
  • Philadelphia ($1,070 rent)
  • Baltimore ($1,235 rent)
  • Denver ($1,089 rent)
  • Salt Lake City ($772 rent)
  • San Francisco ($1,653 rent)
  • Seattle ($1,199 rent)
  • Oklahoma City, Okla. ($676 rent)

Recent graduates are not opposed to the prospect of moving, though.  According to the survey, respondents said their top reason for moving in 2012 was for employment possibilities. 

"When starting out, it can be tempting to focus on only one aspect of a city," said Tammy Kotula, public relations and promotions manager for "However, it's important to carefully evaluate a variety of options before choosing where to settle down. The first step should be identifying cities that offer the most professional opportunities while affording you a lifestyle you can enjoy. If you relocate to an area of the country with high apartment occupancy, you may find yourself paying more in rent in response to a competitive market. However, if this same city offers a wealth of opportunities for your career, you may find it's something that evens out."

The survey brought together job availability information from CareerBuilder and the Bureau of Labor Statistics and rent information from 

Reach BusinessNewsDaily staff writer David Mielach at Follow him on Twitter @D_M89.