Bright Future For New Apartment Construction; Not So For Home Ownership

Colorado Public Radio investigates the housing market in Denver, noting the revival of apartment building while single family homes and even condos remain at a standstill. Demand for rentals continues to outstrip supply in other cities as well.
December 1, 2011, 7am PST | Irvin Dawid
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The CPR reporter interviews a satisfied new renter in her two-bedroom Denver apartment who was unsuccessful finding a home to buy; an apartment developer - formerly constructing ownership housing, and finance experts on the future of housing construction.

"This project was originally planned as condos. But when the housing market collapsed, David Zucker, president of Zocolo Development went back to the drawing board. Eventually, his financiers looked at all the renters entering the market, and they liked his new idea of retooling the project from 60 condos to more than 200 apartments."

"(F)inancing is available now because demand is outstripping supply, allowing landlords to charge higher rents, explained Greg Benjamin NorthMarq Capital, an investment brokerage firm.

And Denver's not the only place with that reasonable return on cost. Patrick Newport, an economist with IHS Global Insight, says builders are putting up apartments all across the country. And he thinks that this will be a lasting trend."

"We're going to see more renting, less homeownership, and the recovery that we see in the housing market is going to be one that's characterized more by more apartment construction and less by single family construction", Newport said.

Contributor's Note: Transcript and radio tape available

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Published on Tuesday, November 29, 2011 in Colorado Public Radio via NPR
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