The recession and economic woes caused once-booming cities to never reach the potential that some builders had forecast in housing. Overbuilding during the housing boom era and some cities’ high unemployment has left several cities across the country facing a high number of vacant homes that are blanketing their landscapes.
Forbes recently released a list of America’s Emptiest Cities, analyzing single-family and rental vacancy rates of the 75 largest metro areas across the country. (Note: The vacancy rates listed below are from the fourth quarter of 2010.)
1. Orlando
Home vacancy rate: 4.3 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 23.6 percent
2. Las Vegas
Home vacancy rate: 5.5 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 13.5 percent
3. Memphis, Tenn.
Home vacancy rate: 4.7 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 16.1 percent
4. Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif.
Home vacancy rate: 6.4 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 10.4 percent
5. Dayton, Ohio
Home vacancy rate: 3.3 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 26.4 percent
6. Phoenix
Home vacancy rate: 3.4 percent
Apartment vacancy rate: 15.5 percent
Nationwide, the single-family vacancy rate ended the year at 2.7 percent while rentals were at 9.4 percent.
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