Biggest Gains Came on Places like Denver
Vacancy Rates Continue to Decline
Rents in the U.S. continued to rise in 2014 due to strong demand and short supply. Making it the fifth consecutive year for rising rates. The national average rental rate was $1,124.38 per month in 2014. While rental rates have continued to rise, vacancy rates fell to 4.2%, the lowest point since 2000.
The biggest surprise in the rent increases for the year was the fact that the largest jumps came in the smaller and mid-size metros with Denver leading the way with the highest rise at 7.9 percent.
Economists are predicting only minor change in the apartment market for 2015 because strong demand will continue to claim most of the new units that arrive on the market. Two main groups continue to fuel that demand: Existing renters continue to rent because they can’t yet qualify for a mortgage or afford to buy a home, and job growth is expected to embolden more new renters to leave behind their parents’ homes or roommates for their own apartments. According to the chief economist of the NAA, demand from new and existing renters is strong enough to absorb nearly all of the new supply coming on line.