After two years of stellar growth, rents decelerated in 2023, despite demand still at strong levels thanks to a resilient economy. The 2024 Multifamily Outlook from Yardi® Matrix anticipates a year of challenges, including slowing national rent growth.
National rent growth moderated to 0.4 percent year-over-year through November 2023, from a combined 23.5 percent in 2021 and 2022. Absorption stabilized at 300,000 apartment units in 2023, compared to 600,000 in 2021 and 200,000 in 2022.
Yardi Matrix expects that rent growth and occupancy will be heavily tested next year. Of the 1.2 million apartment units under construction at the start of 2024, 510,000 are expected to be delivered by the end of the year, the highest number in decades.
“We expect demand for multifamily to remain healthy in 2024, but headwinds that include slower job growth, increasing supply and waning affordability in some markets will keep rent growth restrained again,” state analysts, forecasting a tepid 1.5 percent rent growth nationally.
The 2024 forecast calls for Midwest metros to lead rent growth, and the Sunbelt and West markets to continue to experience in-migration from the coasts both by residents and businesses. Sunbelt markets such as Austin, Nashville, Charlotte and Orlando are already seeing stalling rent growth, and despite robust population and job growth, they boast high levels of new supply, which will further suppress rents.
On the investment front, already down by 70 percent year-over-year, multifamily sales will likely remain sluggish in 2024, due to the impact of interest rates and pricing uncertainty.
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