Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Colorado Springs apartment rents rise, cap two years of increases

The average rent in the Colorado Springs metro area rose year over year for the eighth quarter in a row during the fourth quarter of 2011, climbing 5.0 percent to $775. According to a new report on apartment rents and vacancies, released today by the Colorado Division of Housing and the Apartment Association of Southern Colorado, the average rent for the region was up from $738 reported during the fourth quarter of 2010, and was down slightly from 2011’s third-quarter average rent of $778.

The median rent rose year over year to $742 during the fourth quarter, rising 4.3 percent from 2010’s fourth-quarter median rent of $711.

The average rent increased in all types of apartments measured, including all types of units from efficiency apartments to three-bedroom apartments.

The average rent also increased year over year in all sub-markets measured during the fourth quarter in all areas except the Central region where the average rent fell 1.8 percent to $699. The average rent increased the most in the Southeast region where it increased 12 percent year over year to $708.

“We generally expect the rent to drop off a bit during the fourth quarter,” said Ron Throupe, a professor of real estate at the University of Denver’s Burns School of Real Estate and Construction Management, and the report’s author. “Comparing year over year, however, we’ve now seen two years of solid rent growth in Colorado Springs.”

Average rents for all market areas were: Northwest, $819; Northeast, $742; Far Northeast, $900, Southeast, $708; Security/Widefield/Fountain, $615; Southwest, $797; Central, $699.

The apartment vacancy rate in the Colorado Springs metro area fell year over year to 6.7 percent during the fourth quarter of 2011, falling from 2010’s fourth-quarter vacancy rate of 7.2 percent. The fourth-quarter rate rose from this year’s third-quarter rate which was 6.2 percent.

The vacancy rate declined year over year in the Northeast, Far Northeast, Southeast and Security/Widefield/Fountain areas of Colorado Springs, while the vacancy rate increased during the same period in the Northwest and Central areas. The vacancy rate was unchanged in the Southwest area.

“Due to seasonal issues, the vacancy rate moved up a bit during the fourth quarter, but it was the lowest fourth-quarter vacancy rate for the metro area since the year 2000,” said Ryan McMaken, a spokesman for the Colorado Division of Housing. “The region saw some job growth during 2011, and that, coupled with little new multifamily construction, has sent the vacancy rate down to a 12-year low.”

Vacancy rates for all market areas were: Northwest, 6.8 percent; Northeast, 5.3 percent; Far Northeast, 6.5 percent, Southeast, 9.6 percent; Security/Widefield/Fountain, 10.7 percent; Southwest, 5.4 percent; Central, 7.1 percent.