With rents up 7.3 percent year-over-year through April—the highest rate among major U.S. metros—Las Vegas’ multifamily market continues to benefit from the city’s rapid economic expansion. The average rent reached $1,072 in April, well below the U.S. average, and the metro’s affordability advantage over other western cities, especially coastal Californian metros, continues to boost in-migration.
Although construction outperformed all other sectors with the addition of 6,700 jobs, the metro continues to have a shortage of skilled workers in the field. The list of large projects in the area includes the Las Vegas Raiders stadium, nearly 50 percent complete; the expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center, on track for a January 2021 opening; and the Resorts World Las Vegas, set to open at the end of 2020. Amazon recently opened a 2.4 million-square-foot fulfillment center in North Las Vegas, with need for 1,300 employees, while Sephora is nearing the opening of a 714,000-square-foot distribution center in its vicinity.
Investment sales in the first quarter of 2019 totaled $680 million, with the average per-unit price rising a solid 40 percent year-over-year. Considering the imbalance between supply and demand, we expect prices for apartments for rent in Las Vegas to continue their fast-paced rise, with the average rate advancing 5.4 percent this year.