Despite difficult economic times, apartment rental prices soared around the country in the first half of this year, especially in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, reports www.local.co.il. The Central Bureau of Statistics found that while the average rental price in Israel rose by 6.8 percent between January and June, in Tel Aviv it shot up by 9% and in Jerusalem by 9.5% in the same period. According to the report, in the first half of this year, the average rent nationwide rose by 6.8% to an unprecedented NIS 2,685 per month, while in Tel Aviv it rose by 9% to NIS 3,719 per month, in Jerusalem by 9.5% to NIS 3,212 per month, and in Haifa by just 2.2% to NIS 1,808 per month. Rents also increased by 6.4% in the south, by 6% in the Sharon and by 4.2% in the Krayot. The report said that in Tel Aviv a two-room apartment now rents for an average of NIS 2,755 per month (compared with NIS 2,090 nationally); a three-room apartment rents for NIS 3,469 (NIS 2,402 nationally); a four-room apartment rents for NIS 4,727 (NIS 3,112 nationally), and a five-room apartment rents for a staggering NIS 6,021 on average (NIS 3,987 nationally). No response to the findings was reported.