Multi-family housing has been of great interest particularly recently as greater demand has fueled an increase in multi-family construction and edged up occupancy rates and rents across the region. It is likely that some of the more recent activity can be attributed to lingering instability in household incomes and the housing market related to the recession. However, it is possible that these indicators point towards a longer-term trend. The 2040 forecast for multi-family housing indicates that multi-family growth will continue at a faster rate than single-family housing (84 percent compared with 41 percent).
In 2012, there were an estimated 76,000 multi-family units in the region. The region is forecast to gain another 64,000 new multi-family units by 2040. While the majority of those units will be built in Bernalillo County, Sandoval and Valencia Counties are also expected to grow their multi-family stock substantially. In addition, the forecast suggests that occupancy rates among all housing types will rise, from 92.8 percent in 2012 to 94.4 percent by 2040. An increase in occupancy rates implies that the future will bring increased growth within existing residential areas. The more efficient use of existing structures and spaces is driven primarily by the important role that access plays in the location decisions of households and employers.