Monday, July 09, 2012

D-FW apartment leasing increases drastically in second quarter

Demand for Dallas-Fort Worth apartments surged in the second quarter.
Net leasing totaled more than 8,000 units — more than five times the number of new rental units completed in the area during the same period, or 1,563 apartments.
“Substantial job growth in North Texas is keeping apartment demand robust,” said Greg Willett, vice president of MPF Research, which released its latest apartment report Thursday. “These are the kind of housing demand numbers we were hoping for and expecting to see.” 
With the second quarter’s jump, net leasing in the D-FW area has increased by more than 14,000 apartments in the last 12 months, researchers at the Carrollton-based apartment analysts said.
Along with job openings that lure newcomers to North Texas, the rise in apartment demand probably reflects optimism about the overall economy.
“We may be seeing early signs — very early signs — of some release of pent-up demand that has been suppressed for the past two to three years,” said James Gaines, an economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.
“This may be especially true in the rental market — kids leaving parents, college grads coming to town with jobs, individuals leaving roommates to rent their own units.”
The increase in rentals in the second quarter was enough to boost overall apartment occupancy in the area to more than 94 percent.
And rents were up more than 4 percent from mid-2011 levels to an average of $819 a month, MPF Research reports.
Rents are rising even faster in popular, close-in Dallas neighborhoods in Uptown and Oak Lawn — up 7 percent to 8 percent in the last year.