Sperry Van Ness International Corporation’s (SVNIC) 2015 Market Update Reports assess the current state of the national commercial real estate market, and identify micro-trends within specific geographic regions and industries for 2015. Today we are delving into the 2015 Top Multifamily Markets to Watch. Not the largest or the most actively contested markets, the 2015 Multifamily Markets to Watch are each at an important juncture that presents unique opportunities for investment. Together, they reflect the diversity of trends that is driving the economy and commercial real estate performance in markets across the country.
Top Multifamily Market to Watch: San Diego, CA
San Diego’s diverse economic base has been essential to its recovery from the Great Recession and the prevailing strength of the apartment sector. Recent investments in infrastructure, including the expansion of both the San Diego International Airport and San Ysidro Land Port of Call border crossing, have helped bolster the economy with construction jobs, while also laying the groundwork for permanent employment gains in San Diego’s manufacturing, shipping and logistics, and tourism sectors. San Diego has a very large military and defense contractor presence, but it has also seen an uptick in biotechnology investment, including the completion of J. Craig Venter Institute’s net-zero-energy, LEED Platinum genomics laboratory in La Jolla in February 2014. The ambitious I.D.E.A. (Innovation, Design, Education, and Arts) District is aimed at transforming the East Village area of downtown San Diego into a hip “24-hour” neighborhood, with ample space for technology startups, restaurants, and housing options that will appeal to younger renter households.
The market’s overall fundamentals remain strong even as new supply comes online. Freddie Mac projects 2015 vacancy rates of just 2.8% and year-over-year rent growth of 4.1%. The average cap rate has fallen below 5% for recent transactions and refinancing, but investors looking for small- and mid-cap value-add opportunities at marginally higher cap rates than to the north in Los Angeles and Orange County may find that forays into San Diego bear fruit.
To read more on San Diego and other top multifamily markets, download the full version of the 2015 Multifamily Market Update report here.
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