Houston rental rates rise again, according to report

A report by the commercial real estate services company Transwestern showed the second quarter was the sixth-consecutive period in which effective rental rates increased in Houston, according to Multihousing News. Rates increased 3.7 percent from the first quarter and 3.4 percent from last year.

Transwestern's Ed Cummins III noted that Texas has played a major part in national job growth in the past year, with Houston performing exceptionally, along with Austin and Dallas. He cited the city's energy business and other features as attractions which may have contributed to the growth. The report noted Houston's unemployment rate is 1 percent below the national average.

From the first to the second quarter, occupancy rose to 87.2 percent, an increase of 0.6 percent. Home sales have dropped, however, by 6 percent year-over-year and 11 percent month-over-month.

"There’s clearly a push to rent versus own," Cummins commented. He did note that broader markets were being outperformed by infill markets.

The emphasis on renting over buying is a good sign for rental property management organizations and landlords, who may benefit from the improvements in the region's market.