Monday, February 10, 2014

Costar: Dramatic Changes in Multifamily Supply & Financing Ahead



For the top 54 U.S. metros, CoStar Group forecasts more than 240,000 new multifamily units will be added in 2014, and a combined nearly 350,000 units in 2015 and 2016. Those projections are on top of the more than 200,000 new apartment units developers added between 2012 and 2013. 

The supply wave already is affecting some market indicators, including gradual reductions in rental growth and increases in vacancy, according Luis Mejia, CoStar’s director of U.S. research, multifamily. The aggregate fourth quarter 2013 CoStar data for 50-unit-plus properties shows a year-over-year effective rent growth pattern that is consistent with increasing competition. As landlords adjusted concessions to lure renters, annual effective rent growth declined from 4.9% in the first quarter to 2.7% in last quarter of 2013, after peaking above 7% in 2012.  

At the same time too, strengthening economic momentum in 2014 could bolster apartment performance in the coming year. It's possible that rising employment growth could offset much of the supply risk from the dramatic rise in apartment construction. 

The new construction cycle and nascent rise in renter household formations may herald a new phase of expansion for apartments.

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