Investors are following renter migration patterns outside of the big cities with non-major metros receiving the highest investment activity on record last year.

 Investors are following the recent renter migration patterns, with 75.8% of multifamily investment happening outside of major metros last year, according to new research from Newmark. This is the highest investment allocation outside of big cities on record.

While the pandemic certainly encouraged renters to migrate to new markets, it wasn’t the impetus for the trend. According to Newmark, investment capital has slowly been increasing investment allocation to smaller markets. Over the last five years, investment into non-major markets has increased 13.9%. Overall, non-major metros typically capture more investment attention—because there are more smaller markets than larger markets—and the share of investment is also trending in favor of non-major markets.

Although there was an overarching trend of renters leaving big cities during the pandemic, not all metros experienced the same challenges. Big cities with a strong urban concentration, like New York and Philadelphia, had better occupancy through the pandemic. Many renters moved to adjacent suburbs, helping the greater market areas to retain stability. On the other hand, markets with less of an urban concentration, like Seattle, San Francisco and San Antonio, had occupancy rates that trended below the national average.

Sunbelt markets continued to be a favorite for outbound renters with the Southeast and Southwest leading in population growth. In 2020, nearly 70,000 people left the state of California for low-cost neighboring markets, including Arizona, Nevada, Idaho and Utah. The northeast was also a top region for population growth with states like Maine and New Hampshire attracting new residents.

This trend produced outsized gains in suburban metros. Phoenix, Philadelphia and Kansas City all had significant rent growth during the pandemic of 5.5%, 3.2% and 2.8% respectively. This is impressive considering that many markets, including the nation, saw average rents decline during the pandemic. Major metros felt the impact. New York, San Francisco and Chicago all saw the biggest spread between suburban and urban rents.

While renters have fled major metros, office users have stayed put in big cities. This has created a dichotomy in the investment market with multifamily buyers flowing demand outside of cities and office investors strongly committed to urban markets, at least in the near-term as office changes are continuing to unfold.

Original article can be found HERE. 

Contact Us


+44 (0) 208 089 0259

16 Great Queen Street, London, WC2B 5AH, United Kingdom



The Vontsira Group is a real estate investor and developer of luxury hotels, branded residences and marinas. 

© 2021 – Vontsira Group. All rights reserved.

Vontsira Group Limited is registered in England and Wales under company number 09913494. Its registered address is 16 Great Queen Street, Covent Garden, London, United Kingdom, WC2B 5AH. 

The information on this website does not constitute an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to purchase or a recommendation of any interest in any investment or security described herein. Past returns are not indicative of future performance. 

All Investors should conduct their own due diligence, not rely on the financial assumptions or estimates displayed on this website, and are encouraged to seek their own seek independent advice on the suitability or otherwise of a particular investment and the the risks associated with any investment opportunity.

Vontsira Group Limited does not provide legal and/or tax advice and as such clients should seek independent legal and/or tax advice regarding the consequences of his/her investment transactions.

Vontsira Group Limited does not make investment recommendations, and no communication through this website or in any other medium should be construed as such. Private placements on are intended for accredited investors (for persons residing in the U.S.), and for persons residing abroad in jurisdictions where securities registration exemptions apply. Private placements of securities are not publicly traded, are subject to holding period requirements, and are intended for investors who do not need a liquid investment.