Very Few Apartments are Available to Rent in Manchester

  in   Insights

Apartment occupancy is tight just about everywhere right now, but Northeast region markets are recording some of the nation’s strongest rates. The Northeast market with the fewest vacancies is Manchester/ Nashua/Concord, according to data from RealPage Market Analytics. This New Hampshire market, located adjacent to the Boston-Cambridge-Newton market, recorded an occupancy rate of 99.2% in March 2022, a rate that indicates vacancies are virtually nonexistent. That March rate was the second highest among the nation’s top 150 markets, trailing only Springfield, MO (99.3%) in the Midwest. However, Manchester has historically been a tight apartment market, with occupancy averaging 97% over the past decade. The market has likely benefitted from its proximity to Boston, as many renters have left high-priced markets for more affordable neighbors throughout the pandemic. But tight occupancy in Manchester is also the result of limited new supply. The market’s inventory has grown only 7.2% over the past 10 years, taking existing stock to nearly 37,000 units in March. That growth rate was less than half the average expansion pace for the U.S. overall. In fact, during the past year, Manchester did not have any new supply come online. With less than 300 units available to rent in the market, operators have had notable pricing power. Rents in Manchester climbed 14.7% in the year-ending March 2022. While not a top performance nationally, Manchester’s recent annual rent hike was a record high for the market and ranked #4 among the key 21 markets in the Northeast, behind only New York, Worcester and Boston. Despite recent price increases, Manchester remains a much more affordable alternative compared to Boston, with monthly rents that are about $800 less than Boston prices.