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HOUSING MARKETS

Updated: Sep 19, 2021

Multifamily construction picks up in smaller cities.


By Spencer Lee

September 07, 2021, 4:34 p.m. EDT

In the second quarter, multifamily construction increased substantially in smaller affordable cities and suburbs, reflective of demographic shifts in the wake of the coronavirus, according to the latest data from the National Association of Home Builders.


The pace of multifamily residential construction grew by 14.3% on a year-over-year basis in small metropolitan urban core areas and by 25.5% in small metro suburban areas, Home Building Geography Index released by NAHB revealed. The index also showed a 20.5% uptick in multifamily construction in small towns or “micro counties.” In the largest cities, the rate of building slowed.

“Large metro core areas recorded a 0.5% year-over-year decline, reflecting the ongoing virus crisis’s baneful effects on housing in core counties of major metropolitan areas that started over a year ago,” said Litic Murali,


NAHB economist, in the association's Eye on Housing blog.

Steadily rising home prices and the increase in work-from-home arrangements have served to boost interest in areas with less population density. The core counties of large metro areas saw their multifamily residential construction activity share fall to 38.7% from 40.2% in the first quarter.


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