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Rent and Operating Trends – Week of February 19th 2023

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Rent and Operating Trends – Week of February 19th 2023

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We are excited to announce our 33rd market opening in Radix Research. The Colorado Springs MSA opened in our research platform this week as we continue to expand our market coverage. As our data ecosystem grows we would like to thank all our clients and data contributors for their help in growing our presence across the country. We continue to open new markets and submarkets on a regular basis and will keep you posted as new geographies become available within Radix Research.

The U.S. economy continues to perform well as we progress through 2023. Later this week we will get a closer look at how last year concluded from an economic output perspective as the second estimate of Q4 GDP is scheduled to be released Thursday. Expectations are for another strong read, similar to the report in January. While oil prices have remained relatively range bound for the past 5 months, gasoline prices have begun to creep upward from their late December lows. With inflation continuing to run higher than expected, a significant rise in gas prices could again hurt the consumer through the spring and summer. I don’t expect gas prices or inflation to return to last year’s levels, however both metrics are important to watch as they have a larger effect on the general economy and consumer activity.

Multifamily fundamentals were mostly flat last week, as the early year momentum has stalled. However, the slowdown in growth does not mean that the prime rental season won’t be a strong one. In past years we have seen leasing activity, occupancy and rent growth slow in February before accelerating once again in March and beyond.

Key Takeaways – Data as of 02/19/2023

Traffic and Leases:

  • Traffic and new leases signed were both unchanged last week from the prior week. Nationwide, properties are averaging 7.8 tours per week and signing 2.4 leases per week. The national conversion ratio is slightly above 30%.
  • San Jose, New York and Boston all rank in the top 5 markets for weekly traffic gains as demand in the gateway markets remains. Boston and New York both have average traffic well below the national average, but are making up some ground with positive weekly and annual traffic growth.
  • Only a handful of metros saw leasing activity increase, but Charleston, Miami and Colorado Springs were the top performing metros.

Occupancy:

  • Nationwide occupancy fell 2 basis points to 94.31% and despite the modest decline, occupancy appears to have found a bottom.
  • While all markets tracked by Radix Research have negative year-over-year occupancy rates, 13 markets saw occupancy rates rise last week, led by Chicago, Washington D.C. and Phoenix.
  • West Coast markets including San Diego, Seattle and Las Vegas also had modest occupancy increases last week.
  • ATR increased 10 basis points nationwide last week, and the average property has 18 units available to rent.
  • Salt Lake City, one of the markets with the lowest overall ATR, was also one of the best performing ATR markets last week. ATR improved nearly 10% in the Utah capital.

Net Effective Rent:

  • NER increased 10 basis points nationwide last week, with gains led by Tucson, Washington D.C. and San Diego.
  • Rents either grew or remained unchanged in 25 of the top markets last week.

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