According to the Census Bureau’s annual estimates from the Housing Vacancy Survey (HVS), the national homeowner vacancy rate is at its lowest point since 2005 and the rental vacancy rate is at its lowest point since 1995.
The relatively tight housing and rental markets are occurring concurrently with falling homeownership rates. The homeownership has fallen for 10 straight years.
The homeowner vacancy rate in the U.S. was 1.9% in 2014. This was a slight 10 basis point fall from 2013 and indicative of a tight supply of housing. The state with the highest homeowner vacancy rate in 2014 was Arkansas at 3.3%. The state with the lowest homeowner vacancy rate in 2014 was North Dakota at 0.9%, which has experienced considerable economic and job growth due to the energy boom in the U.S.
The rental market continues to be tight even as production of multifamily units grows. The rental vacancy rate in the U.S. was 7.6%, falling 70 basis points from 2013. The state with the highest rental vacancy rate in 2014 was Arkansas at 14.7%. The state with the lowest homeowner vacancy rate in 2014 was Montana at 4.0%.
The homeownership rate remains low by recent historical standards and fell for the tenth straight year. The homeownership rate in the U.S. was 64.5% in 2014 according to the HVS. The state with the highest homeownership rate in 2014 was West Virginia at 75.6%. The state with the lowest homeownership rate in 2014 was New York at 52.9%. The homeownership rate in the District of Columbia was 41.5%.
A direct link to the 2014 statistics for every state is provided below.
Vacancy statistics from 2014 show a tight rental and homeowner market. The production of new single-family housing units is still below more normal levels of production experienced in the early 2000’s. Multifamily production has increased in recent years but rents continue to outpace inflation and the vacancy rate is at a 20 year low.
The homeownership rate continued to fall in 2014 but maybe showing signs of leveling off. The labor market is improving and increases in household formation will follow.
By Josh Miller – NAHB Eye on Housing