Chicago Ranks 14th In Number Of New Apartments Added In 2016

By Gwendolyn Purdom in News on Aug 12, 2016 4:39PM

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Photo via Roman Boed on Flickr

With the number of construction cranes parked in River North, along the booming Milwaukee Corridor, and elsewhere in the city, you'd think Chicago was overflowing with new residential units. And it's true: the city's seeing its highest level of new home construction in years and will add 8,377 apartments to the rental market this year. But when it comes to those new rental units, we're actually lagging behind 13 other cities, according to new research out by apartment search site RentCafe. Chicago ranked 14th in the site's list of U.S. metro areas with the most apartments projected to be delivered in 2016, losing out to cities including New York, Miami, Charlotte and the No. 1 new apartment deliverer, Houston, which plans to pump its city with 25,935 new units this year.

The survey cites a strong job market in Texas cities as the main reason young people are flocking to the Lone Star State, and developers in winner Houston, runner-up Dallas and 6th place finisher Austin are following suit. Overall, the 320,000 apartments predicted to be completed across the country in 2016 is a 50 percent jump from last year's number.

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Image via RentCafe

Rents are seeing a boom, too. The national average hit $1,213 a month in June, an all-time high that we're definitely feeling in Chicago. But according to RentCafe, the influx of available units could help bring those numbers down eventually. Year over year rent growth hit a high at 6.3 percent in 2014, the survey found, but that number has been dropping in the years since. By the end of 2016, while some markets like Dallas will still be spiking rent-wise, it's expected to be at only 4.4 percent nationwide.

Among the other interesting tidbits uncovered in the study? One-bedroom apartments are the most popular choice, which makes sense, because here in Chicago a study published by the National Low Income Housing Coalition in May found that a "modest" two-bedroom in the area will set you back $1,176 a month—a price tag that's too steep for many Chicago residents. But hey, if new apartment rates keep up, maybe that won't be the case in a few years.

[h/t: Curbed]