Regional Rental Market Analysis Project Description - Metropolitan Planning Council

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Regional Rental Market Analysis Project Description

Regional Rental Market Analysis Fact Sheet


During the 1990s, the Chicago region’s population and housing market have experienced signifi-cant growth. Yet in the midst of a booming market for single family homes and condominiums, few apartments have been added to the region’s stock. There are growing concerns that many families - in both Chicago and the suburbs - are experiencing difficulty in finding quality rental housing.

To provide current data to decision makers, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has initiated the Regional Rental Market Analysis in cooperation with numerous stakeholders. This unprecedented study will determine the current availability of rental units throughout the six-county region and identify fac-tors affecting the supply and demand of rental housing. The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and the Washington, D.C.-based Urban Institute (UI) were selected in a competitive process to undertake this research. Applied Real Estate Analysis (AREA), another member of the research team, brings a market research perspective to the project.

Three-Phase Project

The project’s first phase, currently underway, will produce a comprehensive database on the supply of and demand for rental housing. Existing data will be analyzed to understand the hous-ing needs of the area’s low- and moderate-income residents. Up-to-date information on the region’s sup-ply of rental housing will be obtained through an extensive survey of building owners and managers in the six county region. Rents, unit sizes, vacancy rates and other information will be collected.

Understanding the needs and perceptions of the region’s rental property owners, developers and tenants is the goal of the second phase of the research. Interviews and focus groups will be used to assess the opportunities and barriers that shape the creation of and access to quality rental housing. Field surveys will be used to determine the condition and livability of the existing rental stock.

The project’s third phase will utilize the previously collected data to generate 5- and 10-year forecasts of housing supply and demand. The research team will conclude this phase by assessing how market and policy forces will affect existing patterns of racial segregation and neighborhood revitalization.

Research Team and Funders

The Great Cities Institute will coordinate the research, tapping into faculty and professionals from UIC’s Finance and Urban Planning schools as well as the University’s Survey Research Lab. Input from stakeholders has also been received throughout the design and early imple-mentation of the Analysis. In addition, MPC has assembled a technical advisors panel, which includes representatives of government, local universities, and market research firms, to track research instruments and methodology.

Funding for the project is committed from a range of public and private sources, including the Illinois Housing Development Authority, the Department of Housing, the Chicago Housing Authority, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the MacArthur Foundation, the Woods Fund, the Fry Foundation and others.

For More Information or Discussion

Contact Project Manager Samantha DeKoven (sdekoven@metro-planning. org) or
Housing Director Robin Snyderman ( at MPC.


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