Apartment Construction Boom Hits Historic Peak with 420,000 New Units Expected Nationwide

June 2, 2023

New York Surpasses Dallas-Fort Worth in Apartment Construction

In a surprising turn of events, the New York metro area is set to claim the top spot in apartment construction, surpassing the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area for the first time since 2018. A record-breaking 28,153 new rental apartments are expected to be completed in New York this year, a nearly 50% increase compared to the previous year. This surge in apartment construction in the New York metro area can be attributed to several factors. One key factor is the city’s ongoing recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. As vaccination rates increase and restrictions ease, the city is experiencing a resurgence in economic activity, attracting both domestic and international renters. Additionally, the demand for rental housing in New York remains high due to its status as a global financial and cultural hub, with a thriving job market and a diverse population. These factors, combined with favorable financing conditions and government initiatives to encourage housing development, have contributed to New York’s remarkable growth in apartment construction and its reclamation of the top spot in the national rankings.

Half of Top Metro Areas to Reach Five-Year Peaks in Apartment Deliveries

This year, half of the top 20 metro areas are estimated to hit their five-year peaks in apartment deliveries. Cities such as Nashville, TN, and Portland, OR, are among the newcomers expected to break their records. The surge in construction is driven by pent-up demand for apartments nationwide, as some renters postpone homeownership due to soaring inflation and rising interest rates.

Miami Makes a Comeback as the Nation’s Most Competitive Rental Market

The Miami metro area has made an impressive climb back to the top, surpassing super builders like Houston and Austin, TX. The demand for rentals in Miami is so high that the existing supply can’t keep up. Developers in the Miami metro are working diligently to meet the growing demand and are set to deliver record-breaking numbers in 2022 compared to previous years. The resurgence of the Miami metro area as the nation’s most competitive rental market is a testament to its enduring appeal as a vibrant and sought-after destination. Known for its sunny weather, beautiful beaches, and thriving entertainment and tourism industry, Miami has long been a desirable place to live and work. The city’s diverse population and robust job market, particularly in sectors like hospitality, real estate, and technology, have contributed to the high demand for rentals. As a result, developers in the Miami metro area are ramping up their efforts to meet the overwhelming demand, aiming to deliver a remarkable number of new apartments in 2022. This resurgence showcases Miami’s resilience and its ability to adapt to changing market dynamics, solidifying its position as a top destination for renters.

Challenges and Factors Driving Apartment Construction Boom

Despite pressing economic concerns and supply chain disruptions following the pandemic, new apartment construction in the U.S. is reaching a historic peak. The construction industry is bouncing back to pre-pandemic levels of activity but still faces challenges such as labor shortages, material costs and availability, and supply chain issues. The surge in construction is fueled by rising demand for rentals, with people forming independent households and opting to rent rather than buy homes. The apartment construction boom in the U.S. comes as a remarkable achievement amidst the lingering economic concerns and supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic. Despite these challenges, the construction industry has shown resilience and is now reaching historic levels of activity. However, it is not without its hurdles. Labor shortages continue to be a significant obstacle, as finding skilled workers remains a struggle for many construction companies. Additionally, material costs and availability have become major concerns, with price fluctuations and supply chain issues affecting project timelines and budgets. Despite these obstacles, the surge in apartment construction can be attributed to the shifting preferences of individuals and families. Rising demand for rentals, driven by factors such as flexibility, affordability, and the desire to form independent households, has propelled the construction industry forward, leading to this unprecedented peak in new apartment developments across the country.

Houston and Austin Lead in Apartment Construction

Texas cities continue to experience high demand for apartments, with Houston leading the nation in new apartment construction during the first half of 2022. Austin closely follows Houston, with both cities working hard to meet the growing demand for housing. The construction boom in Texas reflects the state’s strong job market and economic growth. These findings are based on data analyzed by RentCafe.com, a nationwide apartment search website, and Yardi Matrix, a business development and asset management tool. The projections for apartment completions in 2022 are estimates and subject to change. Overall, the apartment construction boom signifies a significant shift in the housing market, with renters driving the demand for new units. As developers race to meet this demand, cities across the country are experiencing a surge in construction and reaching historic highs in apartment deliveries.

New York’s Remarkable Comeback and Dallas-Fort Worth’s Cautious Approach

New York, once severely impacted by the pandemic and subsequent restrictions, is making a remarkable comeback in the apartment construction scene. Despite a decrease in population in 2021, the metro area is expected to see a record-breaking number of 28,153 new rental apartments completed in 2022, a significant increase from the previous year. In contrast, the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, known for its population growth, is taking a more cautious approach to multifamily construction. While the metro area continues to experience significant population increases, it is set to add 10% fewer new units in 2022 compared to 2021. This shift in momentum allows New York to surpass Dallas-Fort Worth in apartment construction after a four-year streak. New York’s resurgence in the apartment construction scene is a testament to the city’s resilience and ability to adapt in the face of adversity. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic and its impact on the population, New York is making a strong comeback. The projected completion of a record-breaking 28,153 new rental apartments in 2022 showcases renewed confidence in the city’s real estate market. This surge in construction signals a revitalization of the housing sector and underscores New York’s position as a prominent player in the national apartment construction landscape. On the other hand, the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, known for its consistent population growth, is taking a more measured approach to multifamily construction. While the region continues to attract new residents, the projected number of new units to be added in 2022 is expected to be 10% lower than the previous year. This cautious stance may reflect a strategic adjustment in response to changing market dynamics and the need for a balanced supply-demand equilibrium. The shift in momentum between these two major metro areas highlights the dynamic nature of the apartment construction industry. While Dallas-Fort Worth has enjoyed a period of sustained growth, New York’s ability to surpass it in apartment construction after a four-year streak demonstrates the city’s ability to rebound and adapt to evolving market conditions. It also underscores the competitiveness and ever-changing landscape of the real estate industry, where different cities and regions experience fluctuations in their construction activities based on a range of factors, including population trends, economic conditions, and market demand.

Seattle’s Struggle to Meet Demand and Other Notable Cities

Seattle, like other major coastal cities, has been facing an extreme shortage of housing for years. While the number of new apartments increased by 3,232 in the first half of 2022, supply struggles to keep up with the high demand. City officials are already working on strategies to add more housing, as the population is projected to reach 1 million by 2044. Miami, another highly sought-after rental market, continues to attract renters from across the country. Despite the construction efforts that added nearly 3,000 new apartments in the first half of the year, the demand for rentals in the city remains skyrocketing. Other notable cities experiencing significant apartment construction include Orlando and Tampa in Florida, as well as Nashville, Portland, and Chicago. These cities are set to break their five-year records in 2022, adding thousands of new rental units to meet the demand.

Texas Cities Lead in First-Half Apartment Construction

On a city-level comparison, Texas cities dominate the first-half apartment construction scene. Houston leads the nation with 4,746 new units built, attracting renters seeking job opportunities in the city. Austin closely follows with 4,236 new apartments, as the growing tech hub’s skyline undergoes a transformation. San Antonio and Dallas also made it to the top 20 nationwide for new apartment construction, with 2,394 and 1,507 units built, respectively. These findings are based on data analyzed by RentCafe.com and Yardi Matrix, with projections calculated using a proprietary algorithm. The analysis focuses on metropolitan statistical areas across the U.S., considering buildings containing 50 or more units. The apartment construction boom represents a shift in the housing market, driven by pent-up demand for rentals and shifting preferences among potential homebuyers. Despite challenges such as labor shortages and supply chain issues, developers are working diligently to meet the growing demand for apartments in various metro areas, resulting in historic highs in construction activity.