LAS VEGAS, NV – With the housing boom overtaking Las Vegas in recent years, one fact has emerged above all others- there are currently not enough houses to satisfy the overwhelming demand, pure and simple. But while developers are doing their best to ramp up construction to give prospective Southern Nevada homeowners more options (which would hopefully also help to drive down skyrocketing real estate prices in the process) people looking for a roof over their heads are turning to apartments, causing their availability – and prices – to dwindle as well, and subsequently driving more and more investment in that aspect of local housing.
Recent reports have noted that apartment vacancy rates in Las Vegas are among the lowest in the United States, currently standing at only 3.1 percent, compared to the national rate of 4.5 percent; this represents a vacancy increase in Las Vegas of 2.8 percent over the second quarter of 2017. Rent prices have continued to climb with greater demand as well, with tenants experiencing a 0.7 second-quarter bump to an average monthly cost of $956 in the Southern Nevada region; the national average is currently $1,295, which makes Vegas slightly cheaper than many other cities nationwide, albeit for the time being.
Bridge Investment Group, based out of Salt Lake City, Utah, is jumping into the apartment scene with both feet; they recently announced that they had purchased eight Las Vegas apartment complexes in a deal worth approximately $130 million. The complexes that were acquired as a part of the deal include Oasis Meadows on Nellis Boulevard in east Las Vegas; Oasis Landing on Bonanza Road; Oasis Ridge on Charleston Boulevard; and Oasis Bay on Katie Avenue, among others.
Buying apartment complexes in Las Vegas en masse is nothing new; in May, New York investment firm The Blackstone Group purchased three in May for $170 million and TruAmerica Multifamily of Los Angeles acquired three complexes of their own in September of 2016 for $83.5 million; in addition, 15 local apartment complexes, a retail center, and 20 acres of property were sold by Camden Property Trust of Houston to out-of-state investors.
Indeed, the apartment situation in Las Vegas is such that developers are finding it worth the effort and expense to replace aging and outdated apartment complexes as opposed to renovating them; for example, the 120-unit North Las Vegas public housing complex Rose Gardens – assailed by numerous structural issues due to its advanced age that would take at least $12.5 million to fix (according to estimates), will be building a new Rose Gardens right across the street as part of a new project spearheaded by the City of North Las Vegas to improve the surrounding neighborhood. The new Rose Gardens will be an energy-efficient, water-smart building, and once completed, the demolition of the old building will make way for yet more apartment complex construction to fill the area’s population needs.
Las Vegas’ apartment market has become highly competitive in recent months and years, with a general uptick in rents and construction amid dwindling vacancies. With recent increase in development, it’s expected that the apartment market in Las Vegas is only going to continue to heat up.
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