- Home-ownership rates for young adults and black households are near 30 year lows
- Vacancy rates are lowest for Class C apartments, and highest for Class A apartments
- Nearly 50% of renters nationwide are cost burdened
- Multifamily starts were down 9.7% in 2016-17, while completions were up 11.3%
- Median home prices in Seattle, Portland metro areas are approximately 5-7.9 times greater than incomes
- Oregon and Washington are experiencing high levels of domestic in-migration of Millennials
- The national rental housing stock is shifting to higher-cost units
- Apartment properties are appreciating faster than single family homes
Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Monday, June 18, 2018
This week: The Portland City Council puts off for another year a vote on seismic retrofit requirements; The National Multifamily Housing Council reports that over 30 percent of the cost of multifamily development is due to governmental regulation; and the Oregonian editorial board questions whether Metro's plan to place a $652 million affordable housing bond on the November ballot is enough to make a difference in the housing crisis.
Thursday, June 14, 2018
Apartment and condo development can be subject to a significant array of regulatory costs, including a broad range of fees, standards and other requirements imposed at different stages of the development and construction process. However, until now there had been no previous research done to analyze the extent of this regulation. This joint research effort surveyed NAHB and NMHC members to quantify how much regulation exists and how much it is adding to the cost of developing new multifamily properties.
Breaking down the government regulation costs showed that an average of 7 percent of regulatory costs come from building code changes over the past 10 years, 5.9 percent is attributable to development requirements (such as streets, sidewalks, parking, landscaping, and architectural design) that go beyond what the developer would ordinarily provide, and 4.2 percent of the costs come from non-refundable fees charged when site work begins.
“The home building industry is one of the most highly regulated industries, and the multifamily sector is particularly subject to these obligations,” said NAHB Chairman Randy Noel, a custom home builder from LaPlace, La. “Housing affordability is a huge issue throughout the county, and this new research only further illustrates how the layers of excessive regulation translate into higher rents and reduced affordability for consumers.”
“The current regulatory framework has limited the amount of housing that can be built and increased the cost of what is produced,” said NMHC President Doug Bibby. “At a time when states and localities are struggling to address housing affordability challenges, public and private stakeholders should work together to streamline regulations and take the steps necessary to expand housing in communities across the country.”
Although local governments generally have authority for approving the development and adopting building codes, state and federal governments are increasingly becoming involved in the process and layering on additional levels of fees and regulations.
Developers can almost certainly expect average costs to be higher now or in the near future due to the effect of recent regulations that went in place at the end of 2017, such as the new Silica Rule. Further, the survey does not account for other price-influencing factors such as the effects of recent tariffs on building materials, or the extent to which local jurisdictions empower citizens to oppose multifamily development in their communities.
Read the full document.
In the meantime, city staff were directed to study and return in September with a recommendation on adopting an ordinance requiring URM buildings to post placards that they may be unsafe during a seismic event. The council discussed the following language: "This is an unreinforced masonry building. Unreinforced masonry buildings may be unsafe in the event of an earthquake." If that language is adopted in September the signs would be required to be posted by March, 2019.
The city voted to separate churches from other buildings and to set up a separate committee to study church and other nonprofit needs.
The requirement of securing walls to floors was tabled pending further study by the committee, which will be required to report back to the City Council in six months, and the ordinance will be voted on again in one year. The committee was also directed to work to find ways to finance any required retrofits.
Public buildings and schools remained a top priority on the council's agenda for retrofit requirements.
Watch the council meeting:
June 13 - AM Session - Timestamp 3:03
Compelling testimony from local Pastors.
While not entirely satisfied with the outcome, the group Save Portland Buildings was pleased owners were able to "impact and shine a light on the issues by exposing conflicts of interest and lack of representation."
Read the Oregonian story.