NYC leads US for apartment construction with 28,152 units

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New York Construction News staff writer

New York City is on track to build more apartments than any other city in the U.S. this year, according to a report from RentCafe and Yardi Matrix.

The report says city will build 28,152 of the 420,000 units expected to be built across the country by the end of 2022. It’s the first year New York leads in the category since 2018.

After slowing during the pandemic, more than 423,000 apartments were built in the U.S. last year, the highest total since 1972, according to RentCafe, as demand for rentals climbed.

“The construction industry is finally returning to pre-pandemic levels of activity but is still being hampered by three familiar challenges: labor shortages; material costs and availability; and supply chain issues,” said Doug Ressler, manager of business intelligence at Yardi Matrix.

New York metro is projected to knock Dallas-Fort Worth from the top position for the first time since 2018, while developers in half of the top 20 metros have embarked on a veritable apartment building spree and are projected to hit their five-year highs this year.

Citing a combination of rising interest rates, lack of available units and growing need for more living space have many would-be homebuyers continuing to rent, the report says New York developers have upped their game and the metro is on track to see the highest number of units delivered in the last five years.

The RentCafe report concluded 10 major U.S. cities it studied will gain more housing units this year than the last five years. Highlights in the report include:

  • 420,000 new apartments are expected nationwide. In fact, multifamily construction in the last two years is at a 50-year high: Apartment completions last surpassed the 400,000 unit mark in 1972.
  • New York is poised to surpass the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area in apartment construction, claiming the top spot for the first time since 2018.
  • Half of the top 20 metro areas are estimated to hit their five-year peaks in apartment deliveries this year, including newcomers Nashville, TN, and Portland, OR.
  • The Miami metro, the nation’s most competitive rental market, made an impressive climb back to the top, surpassing super builders like Houston and Austin, TX.

“New apartment construction in the U.S. is flexing its muscle once again in 2022, despite pressing economic concerns and supply chain disruptions in the aftermath of the pandemic. And with 420,000 new rental units projected to be completed this year, multifamily construction is at a historic, 50-year peak,” the report states.

“This construction boom is driven by pent-up demand for apartments nationwide, especially as some renters postpone their dream to become homeowners amid soaring inflation and rising interest rates.”

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