Shortage of multi-family housing ahead?

A housing shortage in multi-family rental units? That’s the forecast by industry experts speaking at the International Builders’ Show (IBS) in Las Vegas in late January. Demand will outstrip current supply by mid-2011, with increasing shortages of rental housing through 2014, they say. It’s likely to increase market-rate rents as much as 8 to 10 percent per year in 2011 and 2012, and by 4 to 7 percent per year thereafter through 2015, according to HomeChannel News.

“Lack of debt and equity is crippling private companies’ ability to start new development,” said Jerry Durkin of Wood Partners in Atlanta. “Over the last 10 years, our company built about 3,500 apartment and condo units a year. In 2009, we closed on one development deal, in December.”

Other builders at a press conference organized by the National Association of Home Builders, sponsors of IBS, shared similar experiences.

Michael Costa, president and CEO of MacFarlane Costa Housing Partners, developers of work force housing, says “… we have four small apartment communities under construction, and about the same number pending for 2010.”
The communities are being built through federally subsidized programs, such as the low-income housing tax credit program.

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