Rental Vacancies Decline Along with Homeownership Rate

by devteam August 5th, 2011 | Share

As anticipated, the vacancy rate for rental unitsrndropped again in the second quarter of 2011 according to the ResidentialrnVacancies and Homeownership Report from the U.S. Census Bureau.  The data is derived from the Housing VacancyrnSurvey, a supplement to the Current Population Survey.</p

The vacancy rate for rental units was 9.2 percent whilernfor homeowner housing it was 2.5 percent. rnRental vacancies were down 1.4 percentage points from the rate in thernsecond quarter of 2010 and 0.5 percentage points lower than in the firstrnquarter of 2011.  Homeowner vacanciesrnwere essentially unchanged from both earlier dates.</p

Thernhomeowner vacancy rate is the proportion of the inventory which is vacant andrnfor sale while the rental vacancy rate is the proportion of the rentalrninventory which is vacant and for rent.  A housing unit is vacant if no one is living in it at therntime of the interview, unless its occupants are only temporarily absent. Inrnaddition, a vacant unit may be one which is entirely occupied by persons whornhave a usual residence elsewhere (URE).</p

Quick Recap….</p<table border="1" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0"<tbody<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

Type</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

Q2rn 2010</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

Q2rn 2011</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

Change</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

Percentrn of Total (2011)</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

All housing units</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

130,517</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

131,173</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

656</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"


 rn</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

 rn Occupied</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

111,667</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

112,473</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

806</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

85.7</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

   rn Owner</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

74,735</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

74,131</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-604</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

56.5</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

   rn Renter</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

36,933</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

38,342</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

1,409</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

29.2</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

 rn Vacant</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

18,850</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

18.700</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-150</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

14.3</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

   rn Year-round</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

14,419</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

14,165</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-254</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

10.8</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

       For rent</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

4,423</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

3,918</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-505</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

3.0</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

       For sale only</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

1,958</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

1,945</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-13</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

1.5</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

       Rented or sold</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

953</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

1,009</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

56</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

0.8</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

       Held off market</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

7,085</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

7,293</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

208</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

5.6</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

         For occasional use</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

2,133</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

2,292</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

159</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

1.7</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

         Temp occ. by URE</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

1,227</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

1,159</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

-68</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

0.9</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

         Other</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

3,725</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

3,843</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

118</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"

2.9</p</td</tr<tr<td valign="top" width="175"

  rn Seasonal</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

4,431</p</td<td valign="top" width="96"

4,535</p</td<td valign="top" width="106"

104</p</td<td valign="top" width="134"


(All numbers are in thousands)</p

Despite the lessening of vacanciesrnin the rental market, rents for vacant units have actually declined in the lastrnyear from just over $700 to a current median rent of $684.  The median asking sales price for vacant salernunits was $138,400.  This is essentiallyrnunchanged from one year earlier although there was a slight and shirt-livedrnbump during the intervening months.</p

The national homeownership rate is 65.9 percent, 1.0rnpercentage points lower than one year earlier and 0.5 points lower than thernfirst quarter.  Homeownership rates werernalso down in every region. In the Northeast the rate is 63.0 compared to 64.2rnpercent a year earlier; the Midwest dropped from 70.8 percent to 70.0 percent;rnthe South was at 68.2 percent compared to 69.1 and the South 60.3 against 61.4.rn</p

The homeownership vacancy rate in principal citiesrnwas 2.9 percent compared to 2.4 percent in the suburbs and 2.3 percent outsidernof Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs). rnThese numbers are not statistically different than those in the second quarterrnof 2010.  The rental vacancy rate inrnprincipal cities was 9.6 percent compared to 10.6 in Q2 2010 and in suburbs 8.6rnpercent compared to 10.2 percent.  Inrnareas outside of MSAs the rate was 9.1 percent, statistically unchanged fromrn2010. </p

Homeownership rates declined among all age groupsrnexcept those over 65 years; that rate increased from 80.4 in 2010 to 80.8.  Those under 35 years of age now have a raternof 37.5 percent compared to 39 percent a year ago.  In the 35 to 44 cohort the rate went fromrn65.6 to 63.8; for those 45 to 54 is declined to 72.3 percent from 73.6; and amongrnthe 55 to 64 age group it dropped from 78.7 to 77.8.  </p

The Black community accounted for most of the recentrnattrition in homeownership.  The raternamong Blacks, already the lowest of any ethnic group, has dropped 4 fullrnpercentage points in the last year to 44.2 percent.  The rate in the Hispanic community is downrnfrom 47.8 to 46.6 percent and among whites 74.4 to 73.7 percent.  Homeownership in the “all other races”rncategory actually rose from 55.7 percent to 56.0 percent.

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About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

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