Development

Apartments in Charlotte keep going up – and so does rent

Horizons at Steele Creek apartments under construction at 10526 Steele Creek Rd.
Horizons at Steele Creek apartments under construction at 10526 Steele Creek Rd. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

The cost to rent an apartment in Charlotte is still going up, according to the latest numbers from apartment-tracking firm Real Data, and has hit a new high: $1,052 a month.

That’s up from $1,011 in March, a 4 percent increase from the last time Real Data released its biannual market overview for Charlotte. A year ago, rent averaged $1,000 in the Charlotte market.

“The rent index continues to rise at a much faster rate than the wage index or mortgage index,” Real Data wrote in its summary. “The average rent has increased 35 percent in the past five years.”

And despite booming construction – 10,155 apartment units are under construction in the Charlotte market, and another 13,442 are planned – vacancy rates remain low, barely ticking up to 5.9 percent, from 5.7 percent last year. Strong demand, driven by a strong local job market and people moving to Charlotte is driving the high occupancy numbers. And almost all of the units proposed or under construction are high-end, targeting relatively affluent renters.

Here are some of the key numbers from the Real Data report:

Ely Portillo: 704-358-5041, @ESPortillo

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