We’ve been hearing a lot the last few years about how residential construction has largely turned toward the rental variety, and no more so than in the urban areas. I have tried to document the level of activity in the city in my development page, but it doesn’t quite show what’s going on in the city overall. I did a little research and found some surprising realities that fully support the rental boom.
Here is a graph of annual housing construction permits from 2004-2013 broken down by multi-family and single-family types.
The chart above is based on the # of units, not the number of overall projects.
So what do the numbers say? Well, it raises some interesting questions. First, was the amount of single-family home construction on the decline before 2004 given the downward trend from that year through 2005? And was multi-family construction on the rise during the same period? Did the recession merely interrupt a trend that began more than a decade ago and resurfaced strongly in recent years? It’s hard to say for sure as I don’t have information before 2004, but regardless, it is clear that multi-family construction is the preferred residential preference right now by builders. Single-family home construction, however, has remained steady and well below its previous peak of the last decade.
This continued low level of single-family construction has likely contributed to the fact that area sales in that market have been down for several months now due to a lack of inventory. Prices, however, have risen.