Information from real estate data firms indicates that 2011 was an exceptional year for rental business, Multifamily Executive reports.
MPF Research revealed that 2011 occupancy rates were up about 1.1 percent year-over-year and 3 percent since 2009, reaching a national average of 94.6 percent. Occupancy dropped slightly in the fourth quarter, but even the slowdown typical of that time of year could not entirely stop rents from increasing.
Of the markets tracked by the firm, those with the lowest occupancies were Phoenix, Indianapolis, Houston, Atlanta and Las Vegas. The source reports that experts consider Houston and Indianapolis to have consistently low occupancy rates compared to other metropolitan areas, while the other three are recovering from supply problems. Even these five markets maintained occupancy rates above 91 percent.
The strongest performances tracked by MPF Research were reportedly found in Pittsburgh, New York, Minneapolis, San Jose and Boston. Boston had the lowest occupancy of the five at 96.8 percent, and Pittsburgh took the top spot with 97.8 percent.
One expert told the source that rent growth is slowing, but only because it has gone so far already. In that light, rental property managers and owners in most markets can expect favorable conditions that will remain stable if not improve during 2012, the source indicates.