Lack of housing construction leaving downtown overcrowded

Only the rich can afford it

More Americans want to live downtown, but the problem is there simply isn’t enough room for everyone.

And as a result, according to an article in Bloomberg by Patrick Clark, developers are focusing on center-city neighborhoods where high-density building is allowed, creating highly expensive units.  

From the article:

At some point, said Issi Romem, chief economist at BuildZoom, vacant lots in desirable urban neighborhoods will run out.

What happens next depends on whether voters and their elected officials rewrite zoning rules to allow denser construction, said Romem, particularly in neighborhoods currently limited to single-family homes. Under current rules, he said, it’s unlikely new housing will get built at affordable prices, pushing city-dwellers into a game of musical chairs rigged to favor the rich.

The article explained that historically, when cities became overcrowded, they would start to build out. Cities like Dallas and Austin are good examples of this, but unfortunately, cities like New York and San Francisco keep building new high-end apartments.

Lynn Fisher, the Mortgage Bankers Association’s vice president of research and economics, previously told HousingWire that there will roughly be 13 million to 16 million additional households in the U.S. over the next decade.

And while multifamily has managed to catch back up in supply, she explained single-family housing still has a ways to go. 

Most Popular Articles

Mortgage rate drops to within 1 basis point of all-time low

The average U.S. rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage dropped to within one basis point of an all-time low this week, according to Freddie Mac. The rate fell to 3.24% from 3.28% last week.

May 21, 2020 By

Latest Articles

Introducing HousingWire’s 2020 Class of Rising Stars

This year’s class of Rising Stars celebrates 50 young innovators moving the housing industry forward. Coming from all sectors of housing – mortgage, real estate, fintech, servicing and more, these up-and-coming leaders are blazing their own trail. The norm is no longer good enough.

May 23, 2020 By
3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

Log In

Forgot Password?

Don't have an account? Please