Thanks to some consistent gains through the second half of the cycle, Baltimore’s multifamily market has only witnessed moderate impacts from the ongoing economic volatility, with fundamentals remaining relatively healthy—at least compared to larger coastal markets. As of October, rents were up 0.6 percent on a trailing three-month basis, with the overall average at $1,406, still below the national average of $1,464. The metro’s occupancy rate in stabilized assets rose 0.2 percent over 12 months, to 94.9 percent in September, 40 basis points above the national average.
Baltimore’s employment pool contracted by 115,100 positions in the 12 months ending in September, down 8.6 percent year-over-year, with almost all sectors recording declines. In the city of Baltimore alone, more than 150,000 people filed for unemployment benefits, with the number of new claims declining in early November. In Maryland, the total number of jobless claims nearly surpassed 900,000 in October.
More than 1,900 units came online over the first 10 months of 2020, a 0.5 percent increase from the same period last year. Developers were working on a total of 3,712 units as of October, equal to 1.7 percent of existing inventory. What’s more, investment volume year-to-date through October actually rose 0.6 percent to $925.3 million, compared to the same interval last year.