Jon's Reading List - Week of July 9

Posted By: Jon Lowder Blog,

Here's the stuff I've been reading this week:

Apartment Industry

US Apartment Rents and Occupancy Soar in June (RealPage, July 7, 2021)
Pushing rents upward, occupancy is now is in line with the early 2000s all-time highs. Today’s rate is at 96.5%, a figure last registered in the last half of calendar 2000.
Annual growth in effective asking rents comes in at more than 10% in 53 of the country’s 150 largest metros, including 13 spots where year-over-year price increases are at 15% or more.
Completing the list of big metros with annual rent growth of at least 10% are another half-dozen markets: Greensboro/Winston-Salem, Memphis, Austin, Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham and Orlando.

US Apartment Demand Sets Quarterly Record (RealPage, July 6, 2021)
Renter demand for U.S. apartments soared to an unprecedented level in 2nd quarter 2021. The number of occupied apartments in the nation’s 150 largest metros climbed by 219,909 units, the biggest quarterly increase seen in the RealPage, Inc. database that goes back to the early 1990s.

May Sees Record Apartment Rent Increase (, July 2, 2021)
May 2021’s rent increase of 0.88% compared to April was the largest month-to-month average jump since Yardi Matrix started collecting rent data.
That all-time high comes after April posted the third-highest increase recorded. While the next couple of months should continue to post strong numbers, Yardi expects seasonal pressures to weigh on growth by the end of the year. Still, many metros could see new all-time rent growth highs in 2021.

US Census Takers Worry That Apartment Renters Were Undercounted (The Globe and Mail, July 5, 2021)
Some 60% of census supervisors surveyed by the Governmental Accountability Office for a study on 2020 census operations reported that their census takers had difficulties completing caseloads because they were unable to get into apartment buildings.


New Construction Homes are Increasingly Out of Reach for Many Buyers (, July 1, 2021)
One out of four would-be home buyers couldn’t afford new construction in 2020, says the National Association of Home Builders in a new report.
“In addition to the 25% of buyers looking to pay under $150,000, it is likely that builders in many parts of the country are now unable to accommodate a substantial share of the 22% looking to pay somewhere between $150,000 and $250,000,” the home builders group says.
The median price of single-family homes started in 2020 and built for sale was $336,00, according to data from the HUD/Census Bureau Survey of Construction.  The vast majority (79%) of new homes were priced between $250,000 and $1 million. Virtually none were under $150,000 (only 1% between $100,000 and $150,000 and none were under $100,000).

It's Bumpy Times for Our Nation's Housing Stock (, June 28, 2021)
In its sponsored report, “Housing is Critical Infrastructure: Social and Economic Benefits of Building More Housing,” the organization notes that housing construction has fallen far from its traditional pace: “While the total stock of US housing grew at an average annual rate of 1.7% from 1968 through 2000, the US housing stock grew by an annual average rate of 1% in the last two decades, and only 0.7% in the last decade.”
As home construction has lagged, the population has grown, albeit at a significantly slowing pace since 2015, when the year-over-year expansion was 0.74%, according to the most recent national population estimates by the Census Bureau. In 2019, the rate was down to 0.46% and, in 2020, 0.35%.