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Renter demand continues to increase


Posted: August 22, 2014 by Greta Weiderman

There's never been a better time than now to invest in multifamily real estate.

Interest rates are low, but more importantly, tenant demand for apartments in the St. Louis metro area keeps growing. Rents and occupancy rates are also on the rise, and they are expected to continue to increase, according to the 2104 Outlook from Freddie Mac Multifamily Research.

According to Freddie Mac researchers, vacancy rates are still below their historic averages, and most markets should be able to absorb any new supply.

In the St. Louis metro area, rental vacancy rates for the second quarter of this year were 12 percent, down from 14 percent in the second quarter of 2013, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

For the second quarter of this year, the national rental vacancy rate was 7.5 percent, the lowest in two decades, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

As vacancy rates drop, Realty Exchange agents are seeing a lot of interest in multifamily investment.

“One of my units listed in Lemay - I got a call for a showing within one hour of it being listed on the MLS,” said Richard Stimac, a multifamily agent with Realty Exchange, the largest privately held multifamily commercial real estate firm in St. Louis.

In fact, he is seeing more out-of-state private and institutional investors ready to invest in multifamily real estate here.

“There are some areas that one wouldn't expect that are getting high rents,” he said.

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