Monday, August 25, 2008

Wall Street Journal Reports Apartment Sales Pick Up in Second Quarter

The Wall Street Journal reported this week that as apartment prices have declined, sales activity has been on the increase. The Journal cites Real Capital Analytics' recent statistics indicating that June sales were "well above" recent months' figures, with $5.5 billion already having closed or in contract in the third quarter compared with $8.7 billion in sales in the second quarter.

Apartment-building sales already were far outpacing deals involving other commercial property, such as office buildings and strip malls with the availability of credit from government-sponsored Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac helping to buoy new deals.

Last month, Fannie Mae announced month that it would increase its commitment to buy loans on multifamily housing of up to $5 million to provide additional liquidity for rental housing. From January-June, Fannie said it invested $20 billion in multifamily housing.

Even with sales doing better than in other sectors, job losses in many cities have recently reduced the ability to raise rents and other renters are sharing apartments or moving in with family members. [Ed. note: the article reflects the nationwide trend, not necessarily that of Portland, where vacancy rates -- so far -- have declined, remaining relatively low at around 4%.]

Read the full article > > >