Dallas-Fort Worth saw solid performance in 2021, sustained by strong in-migration and company expansions and relocations. The metro led the country for deliveries, but at a softened pace compared to previous years, which helped keep upward pressure on rents even during the seasonal slowdown. Rates were up 0.5 percent on a trailing three-month (T3) basis through January, to $1,434.
The occupancy rate in stabilized properties reflects healthy demand, up 1.8 percent last year, to 95.6 percent. DFW’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.6 percent in December, leading the state (5.0 percent) and the nation (3.9 percent), according to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Employment expanded 5.5 percent in the 12 months ending in November, above the 4.6 percent U.S. rate but trailing nearby Austin (7.4 percent). Job expansion was led by professional and business services followed by trade, transportation and utilities, which combined accounted for more than half of the growth. The series of company relocations continued in 2021, with AECOM, First Foundation Inc. and Lion Real Estate Group among the latest to set their bases in the metro.
Developers delivered 24,635 units in 2021 and had 43,437 units under construction as of January 2022. Investors traded a record $13.9 billion in multifamily assets in 2021, more than double the previous peak, and the per-unit price rose 22.4 percent year-over-year.