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New Report Names Miami as One of the Hardest Cities to Add New Apartments

A national report released June 26 ranked Miami as one of the five toughest cities in the country to add new apartments.

The other cities, according to research from the National Apartment Association (NAA) and the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC), are Honolulu, Boston, Baltimore and Memphis.

The NAA and NMHC reported that Miami currently has 1.1 million apartment dwellers, who live in 472,100 apartments. Population growth and a higher propensity to rent will lead to the formation of 185,000 new apartment households by 2030—and a need for more apartments.

But the barriers to entry in Miami and many other cities are steep.

“For many reasons, building apartments has become costlier and more time-consuming than it needs to be,” said NMHC Chair Bob DeWitt. “Over the past three decades, not only have hard costs like land and materials risen sharply, regulatory barriers to apartment construction have also increased significantly, most notably at the local level.”

Raw land available for new apartment construction in Miami is scare, and the land that is available is costly.

These factors contribute to an increase in the cost of apartment communities that do get built, DeWitt said.

The NAA and NMHC report, called the Barriers to Apartment Construction Index, ranks 50 metro areas from the easiest to the most challenging to add new apartments. According to the research, the easiest cities to build new apartments are New Orleans, Little Rock, Kansas City, Indianapolis and St. Louis.

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