The Majority of Moves Are Motivated by New Locations and Better Bargains
CHICAGO (February 10, 2009) – The apartment rental market is facing challenges like never before. For the first time in six years, apartment rents are down nationwide and vacancies continue to climb.¹ Adding to this market pressure is competition felt from the “shadow market” or a surge of investor-owned homes and condos that account for almost half of the rental stock, expanding the national rental supply.² Despite these recent obstacles, a national Apartments.com survey found that an overwhelming majority of renters are still looking for a new place to live this year and more than half are planning to pay the same or more in rent.
In January, Apartments.com conducted a national survey to more than 1,600 renters on their 2009 moving plans including whether or not they are choosing to move, why they are moving and if they expect to pay more, the same or less for rent. Nearly 96 percent of renters surveyed said they are moving in 2009 and 53 percent said they plan to pay the same or more in rent.
Moving to a new neighborhood or city topped the list of why renters said they are moving this year, but many also want more for their money and are willing to negotiate. Apartments.com lists the top five moving motivators renters provided during this survey:
- New neighborhood or city
- Apartment upgrade and more on-site amenities
- Rental incentives
- Rent increase, income decrease and job loss
The majority of renters conduct their apartment search online. In fact, approximately 90 percent of renters surveyed by Apartments.com said they will search multiple apartment websites for their next apartment this year. For those renters planning a 2009 move, Apartments.com has provided the following three tips to ensure their online search experience is productive:
- Do not put all your eggs in one basket – Do your homework. When looking for a place to live, it is important to search a variety of rental resources. Compare apartment listings on multiple apartment search Web sites for a comprehensive set of options. Apartments.com provides a comprehensive database of more than three million apartment listings from around the country.
- Look before you leap – Go online to get inside an apartment. Searching online allows apartment seekers to get inside of an apartment and view community features conveniently from their computer. Viewing professional photography, floorplans and video walk through demonstrations online streamlines the apartment search process. By taking advantage of these visuals, renters can make appointments to view apartment communities where they are truly interested in living.
- Get easy access to real-time rentals – Go online for easy access to apartment listings and flexibility. Not only is it free, but renters do not have to register at Apartments.com. Whether moving down the street or across the country, online rental search sites create easy access for renters to view millions of apartments from around the country. Need to make a quick move? Rental search websites enable time-crunched renters to put an apartment on hold or even complete the leasing process from the convenience of a computer.
For more moving tips, read The Costs of Moving – A Quick Checklist located in the Apartment Living section on Apartments.com.
As part of its monthly What Renters Want research series, Apartments.com surveys renters on various topics. For more information on these surveys or to receive a copy of additional survey results, please contact Tammy Kotula at email@example.com.
1. Reis Inc., New York City-based real-estate research company, 2008
2. National Apartment Report by Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, 2008