Renters Living the High Life in Colorado, Washington

Mouse over the bar graphs to see the percent increase in leads and visits to ApartmentGuide.com over two time periods: Nov. 6, 2012, to March 31, 2013; and Nov. 6, 2013, to March 31, 2014.

As the economy picks up and moving season creeps up on us, Americans are on the move … but to where? Plenty of new apartments are being built in South Carolina, Alabama and Massachusetts, while Washington, D.C., New York and Texas have the most entry-level job openings. But our data tells us renters are flocking to two other states, best known for their mountains, their football teams and, well, their laws regarding, ahem, certain herbs.

Could that be what’s drawing new residents? Hey, we’re not here to judge.

Higher-than-average visits

According to ApartmentGuide.com internal data, Colorado and Washington are both seeing an influx of new residents at a rate higher than the rest of the nation. For the time period from Nov. 6, 2012 through March 31, 2013, rental properties in Colorado saw a total of 550,414 unique visits on ApartmentGuide.com. For the same time period one year later: Nov. 6, 2013 through March 31, 2014, Colorado saw 695,024 unique visits, a percent change of 26.27 percent.

Washington saw a similar story. From Nov. 6, 2012 through March 31, 2013, rental properties in the state had 766,510 unique visits, and from Nov. 6, 2013, through March 31, 2014, they saw 954,373 unique visits – a percent change of 24.51 percent.

Compare that to the unique visits for all other states combined: From Nov. 6, 2012 through March 31, 2013, those 48 states combined saw 31,934,165 unique visits. From Nov. 6, 2013, through March 31, 2014, those same states saw 38,161,934 unique visits. That’s a percent change of 19.5 percent — significantly less than both Colorado and Washington.

More data on the AG Blog:

Higher-than-average leads

ApartmentGuide.com also tracked the number of leads submitted to properties in Colorado and Washington for the same two time periods. According to the data, the number of leads to rental properties in Colorado submitted by people outside Colorado increased from 6,532 to 7,786 for the two time periods – a percent change of 19.2 percent.

A similar story is true in Washington. Leads submitted to Washington properties by people outside the state went from 7,913 to 8,972; that’s a percent change of 13.38 percent.

Nationwide, the number of leads submitted by out-of-state renters went from 294,597 to 322,318, a percent change of 9.4 percent. Again, this is a significantly smaller increase than the data shows for Colorado and Washington.

Apartment construction on the rise

According to ApartmentGuide.com internal data, Denver and Seattle — the biggest cities in Colorado and Washington, respectively — are both projected to see increases in multifamily building construction in 2014. Denver apartment construction is expected to go up by 3 percent over 2013, while Seattle construction is projected to increase by 2 percent.

Colorado voters passed a referendum to legalize recreational marijuana in November 2012. The drug has been legally sold in the state since January 1, 2014. Washington voters opted to legalize pot on Election Day 2013, and smoking has been legal since January 1 as well.

So if you want an apartment in Colorado or Washington, better act fast: You don’t want to be “weeded” out. Ba-dum.

Methodology

Apartment Guide tracked the number of searches for properties and the number of leads submitted for properties in Colorado and Washington over two time periods: November 6, 2012, through March 31, 2013; and November 6, 2013, through March 31, 2014. A lead is a phone call made by a potential renter to an apartment community listed on ApartmentGuide.com, signifying interest in living there. Property growth has been equal across all three groups: Colorado, Washington and all other states. Neither Cheech nor Chong was consulted for this study.

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