Apartment rents rose 3.2% in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the same period of last year, according to a study by research firm Reis Inc.
Rents are up 13% across the country on average since 2009.
And there’s reason to think that rents will continue to increase. For one thing, both home prices and interest rates have risen recently, pricing many would-be homeowners out of the market for now. And there’s not a lot of surplus apartment space – the vacancy rate was only 4% in the first quarter, down from 4.2% in the previous quarter and 8% back in 2009.
Retail rents are also increasing. Average rent for space in a strip mall hit $19.42 per square foot in the first quarter, and average rent in a large regional mall hit $40.15. Average rents have increased for 12 consecutive quarters and are now at the highest level since 2008.
A lack of new construction of retail space appears to be responsible for pushing up the rent levels for existing space.
Average urban office rent was $29.28 per square foot, a small increase over previous quarters. The amount of occupied office space has been growing, but not as quickly as it did before the recession a few years ago.