Denver apartment rates continue to skyrocket

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DENVER -- Denver’s rent growth is intensifying, placing metro among the top markets with the strongest growth.

Across 60 major markets, more than half of the nation’s 58,099 first quarter multifamily unit completions, which include apartments and condos, were concentrated in 10 markets: Denver, Houston, Austin, New York, Washington D.C., Raleigh, Dallas, Minneapolis, Phoenix and Seattle.

“My rent has increased each of the past two years, and because I dared ask why, I am being asked to leave,” Denver renter Nicole Roush said. “For years, my friends have been telling me it’s cheaper to own than rent and to my surprise when I crunched the numbers I found that even with HOA fees and a garage, my mortgage on a town home will be cheaper than renting.”

Real estate brokers say Denver is a place everyone wants to be. Coupled with the fact that between 2008 and 2012 only 2,700 units were constructed in the metro area, many decided to buy single family homes.

Last year, there was a rebound in building -- more than 7,800 units were built and this year an expected 9,000 units are going up.

Still, rent rates are climbing.

“If you find a property, you have to move fast,” REMax broker Phil Shell said. “Right now, it’s impossible to under price property in metro."

Developers chimed in that both rental and single-family properties are selling.

“Even before the foundation is put in," Scott Axelrod with MoonStar Investments said. “If you know where you want to live, do your research and be ready to move and even enter into a bit of a bidding war, if the property you like is for sale.”

While thousands of rentals are being constructed, the market is still tight and the reality is buying may be cheaper than renting when the final numbers are in.

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