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Dallas/Fort Worth Leads Multifamily Boom

BY BRIAN COX AND JIM SYVERSON, DALLAS, AUGUST 2021

Nationwide, more than 175,000 apartments were completed in the first half of 2021, raising the annual total to roughly 363,000 rentals, according to figures from Marcus & Millichap. This was the largest completion volume over a four-quarter stretch in at least two decades.

 

Construction activity differed throughout the nation. Dallas/Fort Worth topped the list with 27,700 new apartments delivered. With demand for rentals at an all-time high, the new developments are expected to continue the trend for higher apartment prices and higher property tax burdens.

 

Rents Rise

 

Apartment rents across the country rose by 8.3% in July from a year earlier, according to RealPage. In the D/FW area, rents were up even more – 9.3% year-over-year.

 

“Rent growth momentum is especially strong among luxury properties, with Class A rents up 14% year-over-year,” Greg Willett, RealPage’s top economist told The Dallas Morning News. “Strong expansion in the high-paying job categories is fueling demand for top-tier apartments.”

 

Median apartment rents nationwide have reached a record $1,549. And in D/FW, rents have topped $1,300, according to RealPage.

 

Cap Rates Fall

 

Apartments accounted for 36.6% of all commercial real estate transactions throughout the country in the first half of this year. As transactions haven risen, strong investor demand has pushed cap rates lower. This is especially true in hot markets. Nationally, average apartment cap rates stand at 5.1%, while D/FW transactions average 4.85%.

 

D/FW led the way in apartment investment in the first half of 2021 with $7.7 billion changing hands. That represented 8.4% of total sales in the United States. The Metroplex posted a 74.8% increase over its first half 2020 volume and a 50.4% increase over its first half 2019 volume.

 

Impact on Property Taxes

 

With increasing demand for apartments, there will be more new development that will likely drive up sales prices and rents. Since tax assessors must place properties on the tax roll based on market value, this translates into an increase in assessed property values and higher taxes.

 

Dallas/Fort Worth Apartment Market
Profile 2Q 2021

Apartment Completions    

7,898 units

Apartment Net Leasing  

15,437 units

Average Monthly Rent 

$1,279

Average Occupancy  

95.4%

Under Construction

38,654 units

Source: RealPage