Relocating Employees to the US? Shifting Trends that are Driving the Rise of Rental

Over the past few years the rental market in the United States has become tumultuous, especially for international renters seeking to relocate to the U.S. The perfect storm of a weak job market, recovering economy, new apartment and home construction delays, and an unsteady housing market are all contributing to dramatically decreased vacancy rates as those who may have been in the market to purchase a home will continue to rent, and this trend shows no sign of losing steam.
Because traditional renters are choosing to rent longer and an influx of young professionals and international employees are entering the rental market each day, it has become more challenging to find good, quality rentals - both apartments and homes. In fact, the occupancy percentage of multi-family rentals is 96 to 99 percent of the market versus around 88 to 92 percent just a few years ago. Another increasing trend is that ownership isn't about having it forever; it is about having it when you need to have it, according to a recent article in BusinessWeek.
So how does this affect international employees looking to relocate?
According to a recent article in the New York Times, the shift in the U.S. from buying to renting has made it challenging for employees coming to the U.S. from overseas to rent a home or apartment due to rising rental rates and a lack of availability of apartments with vacancy rates across the nation down to 5.2 percent - the lowest level in more than a decade. In some markets, such as San Francisco, the availability of apartments is even lower and annual rent increases have been in the double digits in the last two years. Even mid size markets like Cleveland, Columbus, Nashville and San Antonio have occupancies in the 97 to 99 percent range. While new apartment construction is underway, the lack of availability of capital during the recent downtown limited new construction starts.
And because most international employees and families relocating to the U.S. for temporary and permanent job assignments are renters, they may be just as likely to rent a home as an apartment. Historically, 65 percent of relocating employees were home buyers but today, more than 60 percent are renters and the number is rising.
United Press International reports that with the glut of foreclosed homes in the market, more single family homes are being rented today - more than double the number in 2006 - and in fact, more rental homes are available in the market than apartments. Reuters reports the market for renting single-family homes is booming with private equity firms racing to buy foreclosed homes to rent. Single-family homes often appeal more to families.
Because of these factors, many employees relocating to the U.S. believe it will be easy to find the right home where they want to relocate but are finding it is more difficult than in years past. The frustration of housing difficulties puts additional stress on employees and their families as they make this life transition and often diminishes work productivity. It's vital to find the right destination services partner with the knowledge and relationships to navigate local market conditions across the nation.
CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway Company, is the premier provider of rental home finding for single-family homes and apartments with a broad range of settling-in services that ease and simplify the transition that international employees experience. For more than four decades, CORT has helped companies support relocating employees and their families.
In 2011, CORT's Destination Services helped more than 5,000 families and individuals relocate to and within the U.S. with services ranging from area orientation tours, apartment and home finding assistance, and settling-in services. CORT's destination consultants help ease the stress of employees moving to a new country as global companies rely on the rapid recruitment and deployment of employees and project teams to seize business opportunities.
Transitioning from departure to destination can be a challenge for international employees, and if handled poorly, it can interfere with achieving the objectives of the move. With CORT's long-standing relationships with apartment communities and property management firms, their destination consultants are well positioned to alleviate the burden of the move, streamlining the process for the relocating family so employees can get settled quickly and focus on their work without distractions.
Whether needs dictate an apartment or private housing rental, CORT is the link for an easy and productive transition for employees and their families to new assignments in the U.S. Contact CORT for more information on how their Destination Services can assist and streamline relocation efforts for your clients.

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CORT Destination Services is the premier provider of rental home finding and setting in services in the Unites States. CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway Company, supports relocation employees and their families with the nation's most comprehensive range of services. For more information, please visit
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Relocating Employees to the US_Shifting Trends.pdf