State of the Nation’s Housing 2022 Report Released

Date Published: 
June 27th, 2022

On June 22, the Harvard Joint Center on Housing Studies released the State of the Nation’s Housing 2022 Report. Major themes included the soaring costs of housing coupled with rising demand, and high construction levels in response.

Apartment rents were up 12% nationally, which is the largest increase in the last two decades. Demand for apartments far outpaced additions to apartment supply. The rental vacancy rate was the lowest it has been since 1984. Eviction filings have finally returned to pre-pandemic levels. Investors bought up a record share of single-family homes in 2021, leaving fewer homes available for sale and exacerbating the housing supply shortage.  

Despite the pandemic, growth in household sizes has remained strong. Homeownership rates of people under the age of 35 saw the biggest increase. People of color drove most of the household size growth and will likely continue to do so based on population demographics, but unfortunately, the average equity gap between white households and households of color also increased. 

Cost increases have made homeownership more difficult to attain, the report finds. The costs of inputs to new residential construction were up 20% year-over-year. About 4 million renters have been priced out of the ability to afford a home over the period April 2021 – April 2022. To afford a median-priced home, the average renter would need to make $28,000 more than 1 year ago.  

In the face of soaring costs and demand outpacing supply, record numbers of homes are currently under construction. The number of units under construction is the highest it’s been since 1973. The report notes a robust level of private construction activities happening nationwide.  


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