Judging from a few calls and emails I get from renters in response to any reporting on the apartment market, more than a few apartments here are barely habitable and, without significant improvements, are about ready for razing.
Some investors here are taking the buy-low-and-add-value route, acquiring dogs and fixing them up. But new apartment construction is everywhere — here and out there in the rest of the country.
It has some people — out there — eyeing the incoming supply and worrying about overbuilding in the multifamily market. The boom “will lead to oversupply,” a multifamily player flatly told an interviewer for PricewaterhouseCooper's second-quarter Real Estate Investor Survey. Another one said: “Excess supply reduces our ability to push rental rates.”
But here, Forrest and Wills found room to grow more apartments: Rents continue to rise, and occupancy is at 93 percent across the metro area as a whole. The brokers counted 10 new apartment properties under construction or on the drawing board — a total of 2,667 new individual apartments.
It's not too much: “Steady new construction is expected to continue through 2013 due to our good local economy and strong multifamily fundamentals,” they reported.
Housing is getting hammered, in other words — by framers. I think we can all live with that, homeowners, homebuyers and renters.