Study Reveals Demand for Rental Housing in Aiken

Staff Report

Friday, September 7th, 2018

A rental housing market study of Aiken shows a strong demand for additional units, especially in the downtown area.

The study, conducted by Novogradac & Company and commissioned by the Aiken Chamber of Commerce, Aiken Corporation, City of Aiken and the Economic Development Partnership, examined the demographics of the area, economic conditions and existing multifamily rental housing supply characteristics to create a comprehensive market analysis and forecast of the citywide rental housing market through 2022.
The demand analysis conclusions indicate a demand for 314 additional market rate units citywide through 2022. The figure accounts for demand throughout the entire city of Aiken. Despite the citywide focus, the study indicated that downtown Aiken is one of the most desirable areas to live in the city of Aiken due to the number of retail shops, restaurants/bars, nightlife and other activities within walking distance. The study forecasts the downtown area could support an additional 100 to 200 market rate units through 2022. There is clearly a lack of multifamily rental units in the downtown area of Aiken, the study indicated.
There have been few recently constructed market rate multifamily developments throughout Aiken over the last decade and the reported market rate rental vacancy rate is 1.4 percent. The reported vacancy rates indicate a high demand, low supply market.
The demand for multifamily units throughout the region is anticipated to increase due to two factors:
The large number of projected retirees from the SRS over the next several years, which will bring in new young workers to the area.

The U.S. government choosing Fort Gordon as the new ARCYBER headquarters, which is expected to have significant long-term impacts on the region.

These two factors will add additional middle to upper income jobs to the local market on top of the current rental housing shortage that exists throughout Aiken and specifically in downtown Aiken.
“Building rental capacity in the City of Aiken has been a goal for the City and the Chamber for several years,” said Chamber President/CEO J. David Jameson. “We commissioned this study because we wanted to verify that the demand truly exists. This study shows investors and developers that they can quickly find a return on investment in rental housing in Aiken.”

See more for the study here -