Orlando Multifamily Report – Spring 2020
The metro's prime selling point during the expansion—its entertainment appeal—became a liability in the short term.
With a consistently strong pipeline and unemployment claims concentrated in the leisure and hospitality sector—the backbone of the metro’s economy—Orlando’s multifamily market is facing a double threat. Rents contracted 0.4 percent year-over-year through April to an average of $1,347, the steepest decline among major U.S. metros.
Tourism and entertainment were severely impacted by social distancing and shelter-in-place measures. Theme parks, resort hotels and conference centers have been shuttered since mid-March, which resulted in tens of thousands of furloughs, layoffs and paycheck reductions. However, the news is not all bad. HCA Healthcare Inc. and the University of Central Florida moved forward with their $175 million teaching hospital in Lake Nona’s burgeoning 650-acre Medical City life sciences hub, and aircraft company Aerion Supersonic revealed its plan to invest $300 million in a new campus in Melbourne. In the meantime, as of May 17, some 900,000 Florida unemployment claims, out of a total of nearly 1.6 million submitted, were paid.
A little over 1,200 units came online, and $994 million in multifamily assets traded in Orlando in the first four months of 2020. Amid elevated supply volumes and an economy facing dwindling jobs, rent growth is bound to deteriorate further in the near term.