Milwaukee is expected to experience a surge in new apartment units coming online this year, likely increasing vacancy rates slightly in the metro area.
With 700 new units, 2012 will surpass every year since 2000 in terms of the number of newly available apartments, according to Marcus & Millichap. Vacancies will increase from 3.7 percent to 4 percent, according to projections. The growth will be limited because the city is expected to see some economic improvements as well, such as a 1.5 percent increase in employment.
The eastern submarket alone will be adding 300 new units. Only 239 came online in the entire metro during 2011, the firm reports. Single-family homes experienced a price drop during the first quarter, but asking and effective rents both increased year-over-year.
New jobs and rising rents are good signs for rental property management firms. They and other multifamily industry stakeholders should have a good year, if predictions hold up. Many of the new jobs are in the private sector, and the number of positions is sufficient to offset some of the job losses experienced in public sector positions in recent years.