How Population Shifts Impact Apartment Building Performance

How Population Shifts Impact Apartment Building Performance

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How do shifts in the population effect multifamily apartment building performance?

Population counts can make a big difference in the supply and demand metrics of the apartment building market. This factor can influence everything else from monthly cash flow to net profit and potential resale value.

An exodus may be worse for homes sales, but impacts for rental property performance as well. When people flee a destination in mass is severely dampens the demand for rental units. Remaining landlords may have to offer deals or reduce rents to maintain occupancy rates. Fewer buyers may be interested in purchasing that property and will probably offer less in a declining market. The opposite is true too. Wherever people are flooding in, demand rises, landlords have more negotiating power and can hold out for better tenants, and buildings become worth more. Knowing these trends helps pinpoint the optimal time to buy and sell assets. Though it is important to know the difference between temporary shifts between the suburbs and urban center and cities or towns which are old and dying out versus rising for the long term.

Where People are Moving Out of Now

A recent headline proclaims law enforcement officers in Seattle are fleeing in droves. As many others may be for a variety of reasons.

However, perhaps the biggest exodus of this period is likely to be Californians. Almost 50% of Californians in the Bay Area told a recent poll that they plan to move out of the state in the next couple of years. Many Southern Californians are leaving too. That’s a massive emptying of people, residential real estate, and probably commercial real estate too.

New Yorkers, have been increasingly moving away from the Big Apple as well. 800,000 may be about to flee according to a recent report.

Where are People Moving to?

U-Haul tracks where people are moving with its trucks. There may be other ways to move today, but this is probably one of the strongest and richest datasets on this topic.

According to the latest U-Haul Migration Trends report, the top 10 cities people are moving to now are:

  1. Houston, TX
  2. Chicago, IL
  3. Orlando, FL
  4. Brooklyn, NY
  5. San Antonio, TX
  6. Las Vegas, NV
  7. Austin, TX
  8. Philadelphia, PA
  9. Charlotte, NC
  10. Columbus, OH

Wikipedia also provides historic census counts which show whether cities have a tendency to boom and bust in terms of population or have been able to consistently show positive growth over the last couple hundred years.

Why are People Moving?

What causes people to move in mass like this?

Some of the reasons appear to include:

  • Decline of neighborhoods i.e. dealing with the Airbnb invasion
  • Tenants being priced out
  • Finding more value and home for the money elsewhere
  • Proximity to healthcare
  • Jobs
  • Fleeing high taxes

At Park Capital Partners, LLC we are constantly watching these trends to find the ideal moments and locations to buy right, and maintain the best overall apartment building performance figures.


Bill Zahller is the Managing Partner of Park Capital Partners, LLC and resides in Asheville, NC. As a Multifamily Real Estate Investor and Syndicator, he founded Park Capital Partners, LLC in 2016 after 14 years involvement in real estate investment. He works with accredited investors and professionals who are interested in real estate investment, diversification, and financial freedom.

Bill has been flying since high school. His father was a Naval Aviator and Captain for TWA. Bill has been flying professionally for over 25 years, 23 of those at his current company. He has accumulated over 12,000 hours and 7 Jet type ratings. He has also held Instructor, IOE Instructor and NRFO pilot positions with a large fractional flight company. He is currently flying the Global 6000 in a long range mission capacity. This keeps it interesting – one week its Beijing or Sydney; the next Rio or Rome.

Bill is also the founder of the Asheville Multifamily Investor Club. Visit for more information.

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