CHICAGO—Ten apartment markets that bear watching by investors,and each for different reasons. In Denver, for example, a keyfactor is the rapid job growth, while in Dallas it's the fast paceof new construction. One thing investors ought to keep an eye onfor each of the 10 markets—Austin, TX; Boston; Houston; KansasCity, MO; Las Vegas; Portland, OR; the Research Triangle in NorthCarolina; and Tucson, AZ as well as Dallas and Denver—is “theemployment rate as it relates to multifamilydevelopment,” Reid Bennett, Chicago-based nationalcouncil chair of multifamily properties for Sperry Van NessInternational, tells

In many of the MSAs which Bennett tracks on a monthly basis,“We're seeing an influx of jobs in many sectors, but we're alsoseeing a different effect” in many of them. Atlanta and Dallas, forexample, have comparable numbers in terms of brisk employmentgrowth, “but Dallas has 6,500 more apartment units that they'rebringing to market. It's interesting watching the employment rateas it relates to the number of units being brought to market.”

With the uptick in employment a more recent phenomenon in manymarkets, the development process may not have caught up yet, giventhe time it takes to go through the permitting process and line upfinancing. That's coinciding, Bennett says, with “the perceptionamong the younger generations that renting is better,” even ifthey're in a position to opt for home ownership.

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Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny is managing editor of Real Estate Forum and He has been reporting on business since 1988 and on commercial real estate since 2007. He is based at ALM Real Estate Media Group's offices in New York City.