Multifamily rents were flat in January 2023 as a strong jobs report indicated that fears of a significant economic recession may be overblown. U.S. asking rents averaged $1,701, unchanged from the prior month, according to the latest Yardi Matrix National Multifamily Report.
Continuing late 2022 patterns, year-over-year growth continues to decline, and is now 5.5%, down 70 basis points from December.
The single-family rental (SFR) market remained strong amid ongoing volatility in home sales. The average U.S. asking rent increased $1 in January to $2,070, while the year-over-year increase fell by 85 basis points to 4.2%.
“Participants at the late January National Multifamily Housing Council conference in Las Vegas were generally optimistic about demand fundamentals, but concerns centered around issues such as the wave of proposed rent control measures, increasing expenses and high mortgage rates,” say Matrix analysts.
However, the creation of 517,000 new jobs in January is a significant bright spot and help ease fears of an imminent economic downturn. The unemployment rate dropped to 3.4% last month and wage growth shows no signs of spiraling.
“Concerns about a hard-landing recession that would reduce household formation are being alleviated by the continuing stellar performance of the job market,” states the report. Gain more insights by downloading January’s Multifamily Report.
Last year, U.S. multifamily rents increased by 6.4% after peaking near 16% in 2021, according to Yardi Matrix. Those were record figures, the highest seen in a century. The 2023 Yardi Matrix Multifamily Outlook expects that rent growth will be closer to its historical average in 2023.