Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wanted: Employed 25- to 34-Year-Olds to Buy Houses via Businessweek

This chart helps explain why the U.S. housing market is looking a bit soft after strong growth in 2012 and 2013. It shows that the number of employed people aged 25 to 34—prime candidates for buying houses—is lower now than it was in the 1980s. It’s hard to expect much of a lift for housing amid a dearth of fresh, real demand—not just demand from investors and speculators.

Read more...Wanted: Employed 25- to 34-Year-Olds to Buy Houses - Businessweek

Can You Afford to Lose 61% of Your Apartment Residents? via Property Management Insider

We all know that no matter how fantastic your on-site property management staff is, no matter how much residents enjoy living at your apartment community, there will always be some that choose not to renew their lease for another year.

The 2013 SatisFacts Index for the Insite Pre-renewal Survey demonstrates that only 31 percent of residents say they are “Very Likely” to renew.

Then there are the residents typically going through some sort of “life change,” such as buying a home, relocating for work, losing a job, etc.

Read more...Can You Afford to Lose 61% of Your Apartment Residents? | Property Management Insider

Map: Where the new Central Texas Texans live via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

It's no secret that people are moving to the Austin area in droves. Attracted by a booming economy, the city attracts a net 110 new residents every day, according to the City of Austin Demographer Ryan Robinson. And that's just for the city limits. Central Texas as a whole gets an estimated 150 newcomers a day.

Read more...Map: Where the new Central Texas Texans live

Gaining Momentum via The Balance Sheet - Yardi Corporate Blog

Real estate market fundamentals have continued to improve in recent years, with strong indications that this upward trend will continue all throughout 2014. Investor interest is expected to expand this year from the traditionally popular markets to the secondary markets as well, particularly due to a desire to protect capital and earn a higher return.

According to Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2014, a forecast report co-published by PwC US and the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the secondary markets will gain momentum as opportunities in premier markets become harder to find and the best assets become more expensive. As a result, core markets such as Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco and Washington will vie with other major hubs around the country, including Houston, San Jose and Miami, for landing top investment and development deals. “The focus is now on top 25 markets, not the top six,” said a fund manager cited by the report. “We like markets that have the potential for growth.”

Read more...Gaining Momentum | The Balance Sheet - Yardi Corporate Blog

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

DFW multifamily 4Q 2013 CBRE via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

CBRE's 4Q 2013 Multi-Housing Marketview indicates that 2013 was the most active year for multifamily development since 2009.

The number of completed units nearly doubled that from 2012, with 12,657 units completed. Fourth quarter alone saw 2,694 units completed.

Deliveries will remain strong through early 2014, as another 16,478 units are under construction, primarily concentrated in the Uptown and Oak Lawn areas of Dallas, which experienced the biggest boom in multifamily housing development in Texas in 2013.

Read more...DFW multifamily 4Q 2013 CBRE

Monday, March 24, 2014

February New Construction Starts Remain Unchanged from Prior Month According to McGraw Hill via

At a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $486.7 billion, new construction starts in February were essentially the same as January's amount, according to McGraw Hill Construction, a division of McGraw Hill Financial. After the strong finish to last year, the construction start statistics have shown lackluster activity during the first two months of 2014. The flat pace for total construction starts in February was due to a mixed performance by major sector – less nonresidential building, but more housing and public works. For the first two months of 2014, total construction starts on an unadjusted basis were reported at $66.7 billion, down 3% from the same period a year ago.

Read more...February New Construction Starts Remain Unchanged from Prior Month According to McGraw Hill - Multifamily News Headlines – Breaking News, Stories, Top Headlines ::

The Higher Price Points of New Supply via Axiometrics

A few weeks ago, we provided an analysis about San Francisco and its pricey new-delivery Class A apartments. The point of that article was that much of the new supply coming online was being priced out of the market, especially as those developments forced many lower-income individuals to leave their homes, as they couldn’t afford to live in the new apartments.

In Axiometrics’ February 2014 Apartment Market Summary, we focused on this topic once again, pointing out that, in addition to analyzing new supply coming online when it comes to the impact on aspects such as rent growth, it’s also important to take a look at the level of rent and affordability of the already delivered new supply.

Read more...The Higher Price Points of New Supply

Four Texas metro multifamily stats 4Q 2013 CBRE via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

The multifamily market wrapped up 2013 with a strong quarter, making 2013 a banner year for the state, according to CBRE's 4Q 2013 Texas Multi-Housing report.

Texas saw 37,739 new units added in Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio — up from 23,880 new units in 2012. Nearly 50,000 more units are currently under construction.

The hottest area for multifamily development across Texas in 2013 was the Uptown-Oak Lawn-Highland Park submarket in Dallas, with over 5,400 units currently under construction.

Read more...Four Texas metro multifamily stats 4Q 2013 CBRE

The Favorable Demographics for Apartments via Calculated Risk

For several years I've been pointing out that demographics are favorable for apartments. This is because a large cohort has been moving into the 20 to 34 year old age group (a key age group for renters).

Also ... in 2015, based on Census Bureau projections, the two largest 5 year cohorts will be 20 to 24 years old, and 25 to 29 years old (the largest cohorts will no longer be the "boomers").

Here are two graphs showing the population in the 25 to 34 year age group, and the 20 to 34 year old age group from 1985 to 2035 (1990 was the previous peak for 25 to 34, 1985 was the previous peak for 20 to 34).

Read more...Calculated Risk: The Favorable Demographics for Apartments

Friday, March 21, 2014

Stop Toilet Leaks from Flushing Your Money Away via Property Management Insider

That slow drip, drip, drip from the faucet or pipe may not seem like a big deal, but the steady loss of water means money down the drain for residents and apartments.

A water leak can add up and send the already steep price of water even higher while wasting what is becoming a precious natural resource in many parts of the country. According to the United States Geological Survey, for every 15,140 drips a gallon of water is wasted. A faucet that leaks five drips to the minute would waste 173 gallons of water annually.

That may not sound like much at first, but add that up across a portfolio and the numbers can become staggering.

Read more...Stop Toilet Leaks from Flushing Your Money Away | Property Management Insider

The Link between Jobs and Apartments via Axiometrics

It’s been a fact since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution: First come the jobs, then come the people. It makes sense that people who are working need somewhere to live. This is something just about any apartment owner or manager needs to know when it comes to portfolio assessment. The good news for most owners and managers is that the apartment market continues strong, even as more supply is being delivered to market in certain urban cores.

The correlation between job gain and residential permitting is strong, and the curve between the height of the Great Recession and now demonstrates that. For example, job growth decreased for eight straight quarters from the first quarter of 2008 to the fourth quarter of 2010, with the low point coming in the first quarter of 2009, when the economy lost 2.325 million jobs. During the same period, the number of total residential permits per quarter (trailing 12 months) fell from 1.143 million to 518,459 in the fourth quarter of 2009.

Read more...The Link between Jobs and Apartments

Regional Growth Continues at Moderate Pace via Dallas Fed

The Texas economy continues to expand at a moderate pace. January payroll job growth strengthened modestly from December and continued to outpace the nation. The unemployment rate declined sharply in January, reaching a five-year low. Despite recent weakness in home sales, the housing market remained robust, with low inventories and continuing house price appreciation. The energy sector also remained strong, and exports jumped in January following a dip in December.

Job Growth Up Slightly in January
The Texas economy added 21,200 jobs—a 2.3 percent annualized increase, up from 1.9 percent in December (Chart 1). Construction and services grew at a stronger pace in January, while the manufacturing sector lost jobs, partly due to adverse weather across the nation.

Read more...Regional Growth Continues at Moderate Pace - Dallas Fed

Houston Economic Update March 2014 via Dallas Fed

The Houston Business-Cycle Index increased at a slower 3.1 percent rate in January, after climbing a revised 3.8 percent in December. This would imply that economic conditions, while still robust, softened slightly in January. Slower growth in employment was counterbalanced by solid indicators of employment demand, area production indexes and continued improvements in Houston’s largest service industries. Taken together, in light of the negative and temporary effects of a severe winter, these indicators continue to signal a healthy economy.

January employment growth slowed to 1.7 percent overall. Construction and mining and the “other services” category posted the fastest growth rates, representing an addition of 2,000 and 600 jobs, respectively. Leisure and hospitality declined the fastest (losing 1,600 jobs). Financial activities had its sixth consecutive month of decline. The Houston area unemployment rate dropped to 5.5 percent in January, its lowest level since October 2008. This occurred while the labor force declined slightly. December unemployment was a revised 5.7 percent. The U.S. unemployment rate was 6.6 percent in January.

Read more...Houston Economic Update March 2014 via Dallas Fed

How to Increase Resident Satisfaction, Organically via Multifamily Executive Magazine

Maintaining a solid online reputation is only half the battle when it comes to improving your customer service image.

While much of the focus of reputation management is on increasing and finessing positive reviews, some properties are taking it back to the basics to provide service first, without putting pressure on its tenants to provide online raves.

Such is the case for Dallas-based LumaCorp, whose customer service has been turning some heads recently. The company's Courtyard Apartments in Garland Texas was recently awarded the top property for Excellence in Customer Service by J Turner Research, which surveyed more than 40,000 residents across the nation. And in a separate J Turner study which analyzed data from ratings and reviews sites, four of LumaCorp's properties were among the top 25 in the nation for positive online reputation.

Read more...How to Increase Resident Satisfaction, Organically - Multifamily Executive Magazine

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Charting a Course Through a New Multifamily Lending Landscape via Multi-Housing News Online

Multifamily housing investors’ options for financing sources have been shifting lately, and Fannie Mae’s recent major revisions to the Multifamily Selling and Servicing Guide – which went into effect in February 2014 – are adding another layer of complexity to the multifamily lending landscape.

Fannie Mae’s Guide revisions included underwriting standard changes in addition to significant changes to the third-party engineering due diligence required for multifamily mortgage loans, more specifically the policies for Physical Needs Assessments (PNA, also called a Property Condition Assessment by other lenders) and Seismic Risk Assessments (SRA) for properties in high risk seismic areas.

Read more...Charting a Course Through a New Multifamily Lending Landscape | Multi-Housing News Online

A Slow Move Toward Potential Oversupply via Multifamily Executive Magazine

The lead to an article about apartment trends is as follows:

“Apartment developers, optimistic about the long-term health of the sector, continue to build new units at a robust clip . . .”

This article goes on to say that multifamily development continues, despite declining occupancy and effective rent rates.

At first glance, this could appear to be the opening sentence from an article published in a recent real estate magazine. But it isn’t. Rather, it’s from an article published in National Real Estate Investor (NREI) in December 2003. Much like what happened at that time, we’re seeing a lot of new units delivered to market, even as effective rent growth trends downward and occupancy remains relatively flat.

Read more...A Slow Move Toward Potential Oversupply - Multifamily Executive Magazine

Where are Apartments for the Middle Class? via Multi-Housing News Online

Even a quick glance at core urban markets will reveal a pipeline of new apartments catering to the luxury crowd. Sure, there are some great, oftentimes very creative, government assisted low income housing developments as well. But what about the middle class? Over half of the U.S. population makes between $25,000 and $55,000 per year, yet we never hear about new construction targeting that income bracket.

“That’s because the pipeline for product that is affordable for that income group is nil—there is nothing there,” says Kevin Finkel, president & COO at Resource Real Estate Opportunity REIT, a fund that specializes in value-add workforce housing. The entity is sponsored by Resource Real Estate, which operates a portfolio of 20,000 self-managed units.

“Nobody today would ever build an apartment community that would serve this population,” he adds. “The cost of construction basically necessitates product that is going to achieve roughly $2,000 a month in rent. If you can’t get $2,000 a month in rent, it makes no sense to build. So it is not getting built.”

Read more...Where are Apartments for the Middle Class? | Multi-Housing News Online

Top 10 Apartment Boomtowns via Multifamily Executive Magazine

While development and demand in the west may be explosive, some Midwestern cities are also able to contend for healthy market reputations according to a recently released list of apartment boomtowns.

SpareFoot, a company specializing in offering self-storage solutions online, crunched data from several sources to come up with the top 10 apartment boomtown rankings. Census data and figures from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis were meshed with growth rates, personal finance spending data and GDP information to calculate the rankings for the largest 100 metro areas, according to the company.

Read more...Top 10 Apartment Boomtowns - Multifamily Executive Magazine

Monday, March 17, 2014

5 Reasons Why Bigger is Better with Apartment Building Investing via

When I bought my 12-unit apartment building in Washington DC I was overwhelmed by its size and complexity. Sure, I had flipped about 30 houses and analyzed about a hundred apartment deals in Texas several years before, so I wasn’t a complete newbie, but having a building like this actually under contract was quite a different thing entirely.

Interestingly, three weeks into due diligence, my comfort level not only expanded but I began to wish that the building was bigger. As I was going down my due diligence check list, I realized that a 12 unit was about as much work as a building twice its size.

Read more...5 Reasons Why Bigger is Better with Apartment Building Investing

Surf's Up via CCIM Institute

Secondary markets are riding a wave of recovery that has brought a welcome resurgence of investment sales activity.

The expansion into secondary markets is the theme du jour in the commercial real estate market. “We have seen a massive movement of capital from primary locations to secondary locations, both on the equity and debt side,” says Dan Fasulo, a managing director at Real Capital Analytics in New York. “That has created not only an explosion of investment activity, but a corresponding rise in values in these secondary markets,” he adds.

Growing confidence in the economic and commercial real estate market recovery has been a boon to investment sales in the past 18 months. Fueled by interest rates that remain near historic lows, investment sales surpassed $355 billion in 2013 — up 19 percent over the $299 billion in sales that occurred in 2012, according to Real Capital Analytics. After a considerable dry spell, secondary and even tertiary markets across the country are experiencing a spike in investment sales.

Read more...Surf's Up | CCIM Institute

High Student Debt Translates into Low Apartment Vacancies via National Real Estate Investor

As 2014 reaches the spring season, the nation’s apartment sector continues to be in outstanding shape. When the new year began, the national multifamily occupancy rate was at a 10-year high of 95.8 percent, according to a Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) report, and the sector had just finished yet another 12 months of solid rent growth across the country.

These fine operating fundamentals have certainly caught the attention of investors: multifamily investment sales set a new record in 2013, totaling $105.4 billion in volume, up nearly 30 percent from $81.5 billion the previous year, the JLL report says.

Read more...High Student Debt Translates into Low Apartment Vacancies | Multifamily content from National Real Estate Investor

Friday, March 14, 2014

Lenders are Back: Good News or Not? via Axiometrics

At the start of the Great Recession, the credit markets seized up and cash flow ground to a halt. As anyone involved with commercial real estate at the time remembers, obtaining loans to buy, or especially build, was nearly impossible. Though government agencies financed apartment activity, much of the sales activity within the commercial real estate sector ground to a halt. Even REITs and pension funds were wary of CRE investments.

What a difference five years makes.

Read more...Lenders are Back: Good News or Not?

Thursday, March 13, 2014

ALN Monthly Newsletter March 2014 via ALN Apartment Data

ALN Data just released their February 2014 stats on occupancy and rents for 23 markets. In Texas, it includes DFW, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Lubbock, Amarillo, Abilene and Corpus Christi. It is a must read from a great provider of apartment data.

Read more...ALN Monthly Newsletter March 2014 via ALN Apartment Data

CRE Execs Mostly Optimistic About MF via Multi-Housing News Online

Multifamily, which has had a good run in recent years, is expected to keep running a while longer, according to the results of the Akerman 2014 Industry Outlook, which was released this week by national law firm Akerman at its fifth annual Akerman U.S. real estate summit in Miami. The survey is an annual measure of economic conditions, investor confidence, and key market indicators in the commercial real estate sector, reflecting the perspectives of nearly 300 CEOs, COOs, and other top industry executives who attended the Akerman Summit in Miami on March 7.

Among other conclusions about the state of the multifamily business, the survey found that multifamily is expected to be the most active real estate sector this year, followed by industrial, retail, office and hospitality. Multifamily is also expected to be the dominant sector for foreign investment, with the majority of capital coming from Europe, followed by office, hospitality, retail and industrial.

Read more...CRE Execs Mostly Optimistic About MF | Multi-Housing News Online

Millions of renters say they really want to buy a home this year via CNNMoney

Millions of Americans say they want to buy a home this year, but many won't be able to, according to a new survey from Zillow.

The reasons: Limited supply of homes, soaring prices and strict lending standards.

"The dream of homeownership remains very much alive and well," said Zillow's chief economist Stan Humphries. "But these aspirations must also contend with the current reality, and in many areas, conditions remain difficult."

Read more...Millions of renters say they really want to buy a home this year - Mar. 13, 2014

Sam Chandan: Digging Beneath the Job Statistics via Axiometrics

In a blog posted earlier this year, we pointed out that it’s difficult to put our faith in sunny employment statistics released by the media, given that such statistics are typically revised as more information is incorporated. Sam Chandan president and chief economist of Chandan Economics, recently explained the fallacy of some economic indicators even further, pointing out that job creation numbers have been lackluster, especially in the face of an increasing population.

Chandan, who is also adjunct professor at the Wharton School, discussed the link between a muddled job market and its impact on commercial real estate to attendees at the Dallas/Fort Worth Real Estate Research Forum and Dallas/Fort Worth Association of Business Economists luncheon on March 6. Though the official title of Chandan’s presentation was “Momentum and Risk,” one of the subtitles could well have been “Don’t Believe Everything You Hear/Read about the Economy.”

Read more...Sam Chandan: Digging Beneath the Job Statistics

Commercial and Multifamily Debt Reaches New High via Mortgage News Daily

2013 was a "strong year" for both commercial and multi-family debt holdings the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said today and the fourth quarter continued in that vein. The amount of commercial and multi-family mortgage debt outstanding at the end of the year increased by 3.7 percent or $90.5 billion compared to the end of 2012. Multi-family debt alone increased by $37 billion during the year, an increase of 4.3 percent.

The largest increases in the dollar volume holdings of overall commercial/multi-family debt was with commercial banks and thrifts which expanded theirs by $62 billion or 7.4 percent. The largest increase on a percentage basis was in the holdings of non-life insurance companies, up 29.9 percent. Finance companies decreased their holdings by $5 billion or 10.0 percent and state/local government retirement funds had the largest percentage decrease at 29.7 percent.

Read more...Commercial and Multifamily Debt Reaches New High

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

REALTOR® Commercial Sales Rise 11 Percent in Fourth Quarter via NAR Reasearch

Mirroring broader trends, commercial transactions in REALTORS® markets registered a positive fourth quarter. On a year-over-year basis, sales increased 11 percent in the last quarter, as prices rose 4 percent. Cap rates continued compressing with a 50 basis point decline, from an average of 9.2 percent in the third quarter to 8.7 percent in the last. Multifamily properties recorded the lowest average cap rates, at 7.7 percent, followed by hotels, at 8.0 percent. Office and retail spaces posted cap rates of 8.6 percent and 8.5 percent, respectively.

Read more...REALTOR® Commercial Sales Rise 11 Percent in Fourth Quarter

2014 Real Estate Outlook via the Blog of the Real Estate Center

So far this year, the housing market has been hampered by negative factors such as weather, higher mortgage rates and prices, shortage of properties for sale and tight lending practices. Even so, the housing market continues to grow. The outlook for 2014 is good — not only for residential but for the real estate industry as a whole.

Regarding residential properties, experts predict smaller price increases this year. Their best guess is that prices will be up but not as much as last year. Some surveys show consumers expect to pay 3 percent more each year for the next ten years. In other words, home prices will likely increase less than mortgage rates, indicating that the consumption motive to purchase a house is stronger than the investment one. Also, the futures markets have home price increases at 5 percent annually. Experts see a continued buyer preference for rentals because household formation has been slowed by unemployment.

Read more...2014 Real Estate Outlook | the Blog of the Real Estate Center

Friday, March 7, 2014

Q4 2013 CRE Cap Rate Trends via ReisReports

In this graph we observe that the mean cap rate, calculated on a dollar-weighted basis by quarter and illustrated by the blue line in the chart, declined slightly during the fourth quarter. This was not even a 10-basis-point decrease, but nonetheless pushed the average cap rate down to 6.4%. It still appears, at least at this juncture, that cap rates can’t seem to punch much lower than their current levels. The mean cap rate hit a post-recession low of roughly 6.2% in the first quarter of 2013 but has been hovering slightly above that level since then.

Read more...Q4 2013 CRE Cap Rate Trends | ReisReports

Texas to Remain a Top State for Job Growth in 2014 via Dallas Fed

Texas was the third-fastest-growing state in terms of job growth in 2013, trailing only North Dakota and Florida. The Texas economy will likely continue growing faster than the national average in 2014, and nonfarm employment should increase by 2.5 to 3.5 percent.

Read more...Texas to Remain a Top State for Job Growth in 2014 via Dallas Fed

Thursday, March 6, 2014

MF Rent Growth Continues Flattening via

Annual effective rent growth has continued flattening out, especially in the urban core of many markets, according to Dallas-based Axiometrics. Nationally, effective rent growth for apartments in January remained essentially flat at 2.8%, compared with 2.7% in December 2013. The annual growth rate peaked at 5.3% in June 2011, and has slowed in eight of the past 12 months.

“As we get further into 2014, concern remains about which MSAs will become oversupplied as new supply outpaces demand,” says Jay Denton, VP of research with Axiometrics. The company has projected that 240,000 new units will be delivered nationwide by year’s end.

Read more...MF Rent Growth Flattens More - Daily News Article -

Fannie and Freddie Forecast Another Strong Year for Multifamily via CoStar Group

The multifamily sector looks to continue to remain quite healthy in 2014 based on analysis of current data from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. But the pair of big GSEs expect multifamily growth to moderate beyond this year as conditions return to long-run historical levels.

The Freddie Mac Multifamily Investment Index shows that multifamily should remain an attractive investment for the next few years. The Index, which measures the relative attractiveness of investing in multifamily properties over time, was at 146.3 for the third quarter of 2013, well above the historical average of 124.6.

Read more...Fannie and Freddie Forecast Another Strong Year for Multifamily - CoStar Group

Why Tenants Want to Move, and Why Some Don’t via Apartment Management Magazine

Leading rental listing service recently asked more than 1,500 renters to describe why they would or would not move in 2014.

The results reveals both shifting trends in renter behavior, and a more lighthearted look at celebrity neighbor preferences.

Affordability, neighborhood and apartment size topped the list of reasons people said they are moving; close to half (46 percent) of former homeowners said they prefer renting; and internet listing services and word of mouth were named as the top two resources for renters during their apartment search.

Read more...Why Tenants Want to Move, and Why Some Don’t | Apartment Management Magazine

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Dallas Beige Book 3/5/2014 via Dallas Fed

The Eleventh District Economy grew at a moderate pace over the past six weeks. Manufacturing activity increased overall, although there were a few reports of slowing demand. Retail and automobile sales were slightly weaker but contacts' outlooks were positive. Demand improved in most nonfinancial services industries with the exception of transportation services, which was negatively impacted by severe national weather. Sales of new single-family homes remained on an upward trend, and office and industrial real estate leasing activity remained strong. Loan demand held relatively steady. Energy activity remained solid, while agricultural conditions worsened. Price increases were noted in several industries, although most were modest. Outlooks were optimistic across most industries.

Read more...Dallas Beige Book - Dallas Fed

Delinquency Rates Still Falling for CRE Mortgage Loans via

The Mortgage Bankers Association continues to delivers good-and increasingly, routine-news about commercial and multifamily mortgage loans. Delinquency rates for these loans continued to decline in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to its Commercial/Multifamily Delinquency Report.

The reason is simple-and a continuing theme for the industry: Rising property incomes and values continue to boost the performance of these loans, according to Jamie Woodwell, MBA’s Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Research. "Commercial and multifamily mortgages performed relatively well during the downturn, and for most investor groups delinquency rates are now back in the lower end of their historical range," he says in a prepared statement.

Read more...Delinquency Rates Still Falling for CRE Mortgage Loans - Daily News Article -

The Weakening State of Underwriting via Commercial Observer

The commercial real estate finance industry has entered 2014 with a renewed sense of confidence. The incautious tone at the first quarter’s outlook conferences belies the industry’s recent history and the losses incurred on precrisis lending activities. Instead, heady predictions of higher lending volumes are being proffered as unequivocally positive signs of better days ahead. More is better in the mundane calculus, and the next year will undoubtedly see more lenders in more places enabling investment by a wider range of borrowers. We are hard-pressed to show serious evolution in our approaches to credit risk measurement. But as long as we ignore that capital flows and the cost and capacity for leverage influence prices and risk-taking, there is no cause for a more prudent analysis.

Read more...The Weakening State of Underwriting | Commercial Observer

DFW Economic Indicators February 2014 via Dallas Fed

The Dallas–Fort Worth economy continues to expand, though 2013 employment growth was revised down. After benchmark revisions, DFW employment grew 2 percent in 2013, half a percentage point below the state’s revised rate but above the U.S. pace of 1.7 percent. The residential housing market continues to tighten, with home inventories still declining and house prices rising. The Dallas and Fort Worth unemployment rates remain below those of the U.S and Texas, and the Dallas Fed business-cycle indexes suggest that the DFW metroplex expanded faster than the state in 2013.

Employment in both Dallas and Fort Worth edged down in December, while growth in the state as a whole picked up. For the fourth quarter, Fort Worth employment grew 3.1 percent and Dallas employment fell 0.5 percent. This compares with Texas’ growth of 2.3 percent in the quarter and U.S. growth of 1.4 percent. For the year, Dallas added 39,200 jobs and Fort Worth gained 23,300.

Read more...DFW Economic Indicators February 2014 via Dallas Fed

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Downsizing Seniors Have Options – If They Can Sell Homes via Axiometrics

According to demographic researcher Arthur C. Nelson, aging baby boomers increasingly want to sell the large homes they bought to raise their families. This, in turn, could cause the next housing crisis later this decade.

But the single-family sector’s loss may be the multifamily industry’s gain, since many of those senior citizens are likely to downsize into newly constructed apartment communities – many of which emphasize multi-generational living.

Read more...Downsizing Seniors Have Options – If They Can Sell Homes

Austin apartment sales 2013: Hendricks-Berkadia via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

The city's multifamily transactions declined 34.2 percent with 86 sales in 2013, after having three years of rising sales. Last year's sales volume of $1.5 billion was down 21.8 percent from 2012, still more than the annual average of $1 billion since 2004, according to Hendricks-Berkadia.

Buyers targeted properties with 100 or more units, accounting for nearly three out of four sales. Even with the annual decline, last year's deal flow was above the average of 76 sales during the prior decade.

Read more...Austin apartment sales 2013: Hendricks-Berkadia via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

Monday, March 3, 2014

Freddie Mac predicts moderate multifamily growth via HousingWire

Freddie Mac’s multifamily outlook report projects that growth will be favorable in 2014, but will also moderate and become more in line with long-run historical levels.

Multifamily rent growth and vacancy in the coming year will be consistent with long-run average performance at the national level, but will slow a bit from 2013.

Read more...Freddie Mac predicts moderate multifamily growth | 2014-02-28 | HousingWire

Fort Worth, Arlington, Dallas among top places to look for work via Dallas Business Journal

If you're looking for a job, Dallas-Fort Worth is the place to look, according to the list of The Best Cities to Find a Job, released by the personal finance website

Dallas-Fort Worth dominated the top of the list with Fort Worth at No. 1, Arlington No. 4 and Dallas No. 5.

Here's what Wallethub had to say about Fort Worth:

Read more...Fort Worth, Arlington, Dallas among top places to look for work - Dallas Business Journal

San Antonio apartment sales 2013: Hendricks-Berkadia via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

Multifamily sales activity remained robust in 2013, though the number of deals and sales volume contracted slightly. There were a total of 61 transactions last year, a decline of 6.5 percent as sales volume dipped 0.6 percent to $931.9 million, according to Hendricks-Berkadia.

Read more...San Antonio apartment sales 2013: Hendricks-Berkadia via Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

Builder Index Shows Confidence Dip In Multifamily Market via CoStar Group

A key measure of developer sentiment about conditions in the apartment and condominium markets weakened in the closing months of 2013, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

The Multifamily Production Index (MPI), released by the NAHB on Friday, declined four points to 50 in fourth-quarter 2013 over the prior quarter, falling to its lowest reading since fourth-quarter 2011.

The index is a scaled composite of three measures of construction in the multifamily housing market, including low-rent units, market-rate rental units and for-sale condominiums. A score of 50 shows that an equal number of respondents report that conditions are getting worse as report conditions are improving.

Read more...Builder Index Shows Confidence Dip In Multifamily Market - CoStar Group

Freddie Mac Releases Annual Multifamily Outlook via Multifamily Executive Magazine

While multifamily growth will continue rolling forward, 2014 may tap the brakes a bit.

Freddie Mac released its 2014 Multifamily Economic Outlook on Friday noting that rent growth and vacancy will remain positive but should slow down compared to 2013.

The report states the overall health of the economy should stimulate job growth bringing more young adults into the labor force and causing more demand for rentals.

Read more...Freddie Mac Releases Annual Multifamily Outlook - Multifamily Executive Magazine