No End in Sight for Pittsburgh's Downtown Rental Boom

Lackluster sales in Pittsburgh's luxury condominium market haven't dissuaded developers from betting on the continued demand for residences in the city's downtown. A 95 percent occupancy rate in rental buildings is driving apartment construction.
October 22, 2012, 7am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"These days, it seems, just about everybody wants to build apartments Downtown."

This sentence could likely be said about dozens of cities across America, as developers strive to keep up with swelling downtown populations. In the case of this article, Mark Belko chronicles the surge in apartment development in Pittsburgh's Golden Triangle. With nearly 1,000 new apartments in the pipeline, on top of 2,262 existing units, some are asking "[j]ust how many apartment units can Downtown support?"

"'They're renting as fast as they can get them built,' said Carole Clifford, an associate broker for Stonebridge Realty, who follows the market closely."

"Ms. Clifford sees a 'rental economy' Downtown and elsewhere in the region for the next five to 10 years. Factors driving that include the difficulty in getting mortgage money, the high down payments required for home buying and a transient population more comfortable with renting than buying."

"We're not even at the top of the curve yet in the rental market," she said. "I think rental is the new normal. I really do."

 

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Published on Sunday, October 21, 2012 in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
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