As rent keeps on climbing, 2013 looks to be an even better year to be a landlord, and a more expensive year to be a tenant. The median net suburban rent rose to $1.19 per square foot in the fourth quarter of 2012, up from $1.18 in the third quarter and $1.14 a year ago. This equates to a 4.2 percent annual increase and a 12 percent increase since 2009, according to Chicago-based Appraisal Research Counselors.
Even with rent costs expected to rise another 3 to 4 percent during 2013, occupancy rates are higher than they were a year ago. These high occupancy rates coupled with the signs of life in the housing market have been enough for construction on new Chicago apartments and condos in the suburbs to start.
Starts are strongest in Evanston, where three buildings are already under construction. Special attention also goes to the North Shore, which is considered by many investors to be the area of town to watch due to its 7.8 percent rise in demand. Whether supply outpaces demand a few years from now will depend on how many of the projects secure financing. It’s certainly a trend to watch as rates stay low and home ownership starts to heat up again!