This week’s multifamily roundup takes a look at housing construction starts, rent growth and rental affordability. First, MultifamilyBiz reports that new apartment construction picked up in April, but was still down significantly from the monthly average in 2018. Next, MBA reports that multifamily rents continue to increase at a slow pace, but it remains to be seen if rent growth will pick up as prime leasing season is just starting. Arbor’s Chatter blog observes that while rental affordability has improved slightly, household cost burden remains a nationwide issue. Then, NREI highlights why young people aren’t occupying as many apartment units as investors and industry players had expected. Finally, Redfin observes that while Millennials in coastal cities are facing affordability issues, they are able to move into homeownership or rentership in cities with lower costs of living, such as Salt Lake City and Detroit.

Multifamily Housing Construction Starts Advanced Five-Percent in April

MultifamilyBiz – May 29

“Multifamily housing in April advanced 5% after a 9% decline in March, but April’s level of activity was still down 18% from the average monthly pace during 2018.”

Multifamily Rents Growing–Slowly

MBA – May 28

“On the metro level, the Southwest is booming. Phoenix caught up to Las Vegas in April for the highest growth rate at 7.3 percent.”

Rental Affordability Improves, But Remains a National Concern

Arbor Chatter – May 28

“Across apartment buildings, the most recent U.S. Census Bureau data showed that households living in small multifamily, on average, spent about 39.2% of their income on rent.”

 Younger Apartment Tenants Struggle to Keep Up with Rising Rents

NREI – May 28

“Many younger millennials continue to opt for renting vs. owning, but they aren’t filling as many apartment units as investors and economists had hoped.” 

Millennials are Thriving—Personally and Professionally—in These Five Cities

Redfin – May 24

“In many coastal metros, millennials have a hard time saving up enough money to own a home or start a business. But inland, where homes and costs of living are more affordable, millennials are able to lay down roots, start businesses, and as a result they are transforming places like Oklahoma City, Salt Lake City, and Detroit into hip havens for their generation.”