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Market Report

Boston Multifamily Market Report

2024 Investment Forecast

City of Boston Remains Popular Area for Development,
Upper-Tier Investment

Zoning debate has major implications for apartment sector. The implementation of a housing initiative across Boston’s MBTA-connected municipalities will have a notable impact on the area’s multifamily landscape. As of late last year, 12 of Boston’s immediate suburbs marked as “rapid transit communities,” meaning they feature at least one trolley or subway stop, noted little agreement across the board as to the implementation of high-density housing districts. Still, progress was made, with Brookline becoming the first such community to come into full compliance with the initiative, creating zoning capacity for 1,500 units in November. With a full agreement yet to come to fruition, however, developer interest remains strongest in the core. More than 20,000 units were proposed across the region in late 2023, over half of which were earmarked for Suffolk County. Headwinds in other sectors bode well for builders operating in densely-developed locales. An ongoing biotech cooldown should be a boon to urban apartment development, as the multifamily sector had faced competition from life science developers for available parcels, particularly those proximate to public transit. While a supply influx will impact near-term vacancy, the market faces a chronic housing shortage and has one of the nation’s higher home price-to-income ratios, which will help integrate these units into the local ecosystem.

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