APA Policy Breakfast

The Rise of Renting & the Future of Housing Policy

May 8, 2012
8:00–9:00 a.m. (networking breakfast beginning at 7:30 a.m.)

American Planning Association
1030 15th Street, NW, Suite 750 West
Washington, DC 20005

CM | 1.0

Featured Speaker

Matthew Yglesias
Slate's business and economics correspondent, writer of the Moneybox blog & author of the newly published The Rent is Too Damn High

The Rent is Too Damn High Please join the American Planning Association for a policy breakfast discussion on the impact of the rise of rental and multifamily housing on housing and community policy and economics. Homeownership and mortgage policies were at the center of the housing crisis that plunged the nation into the deepest recession since the Great Depression. Increasingly, it appears that recovery in the housing market will be driven by renters and multifamily housing.

Both demographic and real estate trends point to the vital role of rental housing in building strong communities and the overall economy.

  • Nationwide apartment vacancy rates are at a decade low while average rents continue to rise to the highest level in more than four years.
  • Housing construction has been led by multifamily housing starts with single family construction continuing to decline. In February, multifamily starts grew 21.1% while single family starts declined nearly 10%. Multifamily housing construction is up 85.4% from a year ago and has fully recovered to pre-recession levels.
  • Morgan Stanley estimates that converting foreclosed properties to rental properties would generate 1.8 million jobs.
  • Three large population segments likely to dominate the housing market: Gen Y, retiring baby boomers, and homeowners displaced during the recession show strong preferences for multifamily and rental housing.

What are the implications of this shift for policymakers and planners? How should housing policy — from Washington to local zoning boards — change in response to the demand for rental and multifamily housing? How should housing and neighborhood policy respond to the challenge of foreclosed properties? How should housing finance policy and institutions change?

Join APA for an examination of these trends, policy options and the implications for the nation's communities. APA hosts quarterly policy breakfasts featuring leading experts, policymakers and thought leaders talking about the key issues affecting planning and community development.

Space is limited. Please RSVP to govtaffairs@planning.org if you plan to attend.

About the Speaker

Matthew Yglesias Matthew Yglesias is Slate's business and economics correspondent. Before joining the magazine he worked for the Center for American Progress' ThinkProgress blog, the Atlantic, TPM Media, and the American Prospect. His first book, Heads in the Sand, was published in 2008. His second, The Rent Is Too Damn High, was published in March. His popular twitter feed (@mattyglesias) has nearly 40,000 followers.