For February 2019, across the United States, apartment occupancy was about 20 basis points (bps) tighter than last February. Average occupancy nationwide now stands at 95.2 percent, making this the fullest February in the current economic cycle.
Six major markets have seen the growth of 100 bps or more in occupancy during the past year.
- Cincinnati’s occupancy (95.8%) has surged 140 bps from February 2018 to February 2019.
- Cleveland and Pittsburgh’s rates (both 95.5%) have both climbed 130 bps year-over-year.
- West Palm Beach’s occupancy (95.4%) has grown 120 bps.
- Milwaukee’s occupancy (96.4%) has surged 110 bps.
- Virginia Beach’s (95.3%) is up 100 bps in the last year.
All six now exceed the national norm for occupancy. Only one major market, Houston, saw occupancy fall more than 100 bps during the past 12 months. this Texas market’s rate was down 130 bps year-over-year, to stand at 92.5 percent in February.
The heave in performance seen in Houston following Hurrican Harvey in late 2017 has dissipated, leaving Houston with the lowest occupancy it has seen since before the storm.