This week’s multifamily roundup offers takeaways from the 2019 NMHC Strategies & Outlook Conference, a look at the flattening yield curve’s implications for real estate, and an analysis of the income gap between homeowners, buyers and renters. First, reports on the drivers set to fuel multifamily demand in 2019 and beyond, as well as where there are still opportunities for growth. Next, Trepp analyzes how fluctuations in short-term and longer-term interest rates are impacting real estate sales, inventory and prices. Arbor’s Chatter blog takes a look at how demographic shifts and an aging U.S. population are affecting housing market trends. Then, Zillow breaks down household income disparities between homebuyers, owners and renters, highlighting markets where the income gap is particularly wide. Finally, RealPage notes that significant improvement in several metros contributed to national rent growth accelerating in 2018—the first time there’s been momentum since 2015.

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Job Growth and Millennials Driving Multifamily Demand – January 31

“The class C vacancy rate is the lowest across the three classes…which we haven’t seen since back in 2001. The flip side is that we are seeing the class A space getting the majority of the upward momentum in terms of vacancy.”

What Does a Flattening Yield Curve Mean for the Real Estate Markets?

Trepp – January 30

“The more stable rate environment would also be positive for commercial markets. To date, we have not seen much upward pressure on cap rates, even though longer-term Treasury yields have increased.”

Demography Set to Be the Next Disruptor for Multifamily

Arbor Chatter – February 1

“Speaking at the 2019 NMHC Apartment Strategies Outlook Conference, MIT AgeLab Director Joe Coughlin discussed how population shifts and changing generational behaviors could be the greatest disruptor for the housing market.”

Where and Why the Income Gap Among Buyers, Homeowners and Renters is Widening

Zillow – January 29

“To become a homeowner today, buyers need to earn more money than households that already own their home. The typical buyer household earns twice as much (2.1 times) as the typical renter. In some metros, the gap is as high as 2.8 times.”

Rent Growth Jumps in Several Apartment Markets in 2018

RealPage – January 28

“For the first time since 2015, U.S. apartment rent growth accelerated in 2018. The 3.3% increase for the year landed above the 2017 increase of 2.5%. Driving the national momentum was significant improvement in several individual markets, thanks in large part to middle-market performance.”