Apartment Rental News Roundup: April 28, 2008

Each week, MyNewPlace provides a compendium of news articles on apartments for rent, the rental market and interesting apartment features. We also track legislation that affects the rental market, highlighting new features for apartment owners and renters, and taking a look at notable apartment trends.

Apartment Rental Market News

To follow up on a story from last week’s Apartment Rental News Roundup, the Financial Times reports that House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank continues to urge for legislative action on the housing crisis front. Republicans and Democrats are divided on what legislation is necessary to complement efforts by the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve to stem foreclosures; the bipartisan cooperation that drove the passage of the Economic Stimulus Act is not expected to be present when Mr. Frank’s legislation leaves committee.
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The Wall Street Journal examines a compromise that many renters usually encounter when looking for an apartment location. Discussed is a new website from a think tank in Chicago that will help you decide whether to rent a more expensive apartment close to your job, or to find a cheap rental further away, with a longer and more expensive commute.

A Southern California city has sued the apartment owners of the Villa Azusa Senior Apartments for not honoring a 15 year old agreement to provide low-income units for seniors. Developers were granted a $500,000 city bond in exchange for providing 30 low income apartments. Apparently, since the new owners, Century Quality Management, bought complex several years ago rents have skyrocketed.

An article from MSBC summarizes apartment rental data from a study done by Investment Instruments Corporation, whose data gives a geographically dependent view of rental costs. According the report and article, rent increases vary greatly by city.

An interesting trend is visible in Phoenix, where an oversupply of single-family homes caused by the housing crisis has deflated the amount apartments ask for rent….the trend to rent single-family homes comes with caveats, as some renters, such as the Stoneback family in Stockton, California, have been forced out of their rental homes after the owners of the house failed to pay the mortgage.

Green Apartments

In news about green apartments, an article from Affordable Housing Finance Newsletter draws distinctions between green standards available to developers. The catalyst for the article was the introduction of a new standard, The National Green Building Standard, which is being submitted to the American National Standards Institute this spring.

The new standard has significance for apartment developers because it was developed by the International Code Council and National Association of Home Builders, along with input from the National Apartment Association and the National Multi Housing Council; the goal with the new standard is to facilitate green standards into apartment and home building, as current standards were designed for large commercial buildings.

Check back with us each week to get the latest from the apartment rental industry.

As always, feel free to send us links to stories that you find interesting.

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