Sunday, November 25, 2007

Demand for larger apartments increase rent in Fairfield survey

Demand for larger apartments inflates rent

By Ines Bebea | Daily Republic | November 13, 2007 17:42

FAIRFIELD - Rents for three-bedroom apartments in Fairfield, Suisun City and Vacaville have increased by 14.77 percent over the past year, according to survey results released Tuesday.

In its annual apartment rent survey by Fairfield's Community Development Department, 92 apartment complexes accounting for 8,043 units were surveyed to determine the median rent and vacancy rates for studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments in the three cities.

Median rents decreased slightly in the past year for studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments, the survey found. But median rent for a three-bedroom apartment increased to $1,375.

'The changes for the smaller one- to two-bedroom apartments were not significant, but for the three bedroom the increase in demand affected prices,' said Lark Ferrell, housing project manager for the department.

'We also surveyed what the vacancy rates were and attempts to convert apartments into co-ops for more space, a move that we discourage because it can dwindle the pool of available units and increase the demand.'

The rise in demand and rent prices for the larger apartments could stem from the slumping real estate market, Ferrell said.

'You could have people looking at a bigger apartment because they cannot afford a home or they had to move out of one,' Ferrell said.

The survey also revealed that the vacancy rate decreased from 4.93 percent in 2006 to 4.73 percent in 2007. But the period that an apartment remained vacant before a new tenant was found increased from 14 days to 21 days.

Reach Ines Bebea at 427-6934 or

Results of Annual Apartment Rent Survey Conducted by City of Fairfield

Last Modified:
Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The City of Fairfield Community Development Department conducted its annual apartment survey of the tri-city area, which includes the cities of Fairfield, Suisun and Vacaville.

City staff surveyed 92 apartment complexes, accounting for 8,043 dwelling units. The survey is conducted to determine median rents for studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom units and the area vacancy rate.

Median rents decreased slightly in the past year for studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units. However, rents for three-bedroom units increased. In November 2007, median rents are: $705 for studios, $815 for 1 Bedrooms, $930 for 2 Bedrooms, and $1,375 for 3 Bedrooms. The chart below shows the change in median rents over the past seven years and the previous year by bedroom size.

Percentage Change In Median Rent

Time Period
1 Bedroom
2 Bedroom
3 Bedroom

Oct. ’00 to Nov. ‘07

Nov. ’06 to Nov. ‘07

Source: City of Fairfield Community Development Department

The vacancy rate slightly decreased from 4.93% in 2006 to 4.73% in 2007. A five percent rental vacancy rate is considered healthy. The reported time an apartment unit remained vacant before a new tenant was identified to rent the unit increased from 14 days to 21 days.

To entice potential renters to move into vacant apartments, 39 of the properties surveyed, or 42%, offered incentives. This is down from 59% of properties in last year’s survey. Apartment complexes with higher vacancies were more likely to offer incentives. Typical incentives offered were discounted first month’s rent, discounts off the monthly rent with a long-term lease, and free credit checks.

Publish Date: 14-Nov-07
Copyright © 2003 City Of Fairfield All Rights Reserved.

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