Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Apartment Vacancy Rate stays at Record Level, Rents increase Slightly

by Bill McBride on 4/06/2010 12:07:00 AM

From Nick Timiraos at the WSJ: Apartment Rents Rise as Sector Stabilizes

Nationally, the apartment vacancy rate stayed flat at 8%, the highest level since Reis Inc., a New York research firm, began its tally in 1980.... Nationally, effective rents, which include concessions such as one month of free rent, rose 0.3% during the quarter compared with a 0.7% decline in the fourth quarter of last year and a 1.1% drop in the first quarter of 2009. ...

"Rent reductions are not over yet," said Hessam Nadji, managing director at real-estate firm Marcus & Millichap.
Note: the Reis numbers are for cities. The overall vacancy rate from the Census Bureau was at a near record 10.7% in Q4 2009.

Rents plunged in 2009 by the most in the 30 years Reis has been tracking rents - and with vacancies at record levels, the slight increase in Q1 2010 rents doesn't mean the rent declines are over.