- Scottsdale, Arizona-based Alliance Residential has surpassed Charleston, South Carolina-based Greystar as the top apartment developer in the country after starting 13,480 units in 2022, according to the National Multifamily Housing Council Top 25 list.
- With almost 3,000 fewer units started in 2022, Greystar fell to the second spot with 11,351 units. Boca Raton, Florida-based Mill Creek held onto the third spot with 10,877 starts, an increase of almost 3,500 apartments compared to the year before.
- For the second year in a row, two long-time apartment developers, Atlanta-based Wood Partners and Dallas-based Trammell Crow Residential, held the No. 4 and No. 5 spots, respectively. Wood increased its units started by more than 3,000 to hit 10,650, while Trammell Crow grew by almost 2,500 apartments to 9,030.
2022 was a landmark year for multifamily starts as developers began construction on 533,200 units, a 15.4% increase compared to 2021, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Those increases resonated throughout the NMHC Top 25 developers list. Greystar and Charlotte-based Northwood Ravin were the only two firms to start fewer units in 2022 than they did in 2021.
At Alliance, the increase in starts was driven by new brand offerings in conventional luxury multifamily (Broadstone), workforce housing (Prose), active adult (Marvelle) and build-to-rent (Silveray).
“The largest growth came in the Prose segment due to years of research and development in how to build more efficiently and economically to achieve a lower basis and thus offer quality housing at a lower price point,” said Jay Hiemenz, president and COO of Alliance Residential. “This R&D allowed us to take this product developed to many underserved markets where demand was established, including smaller tertiary markets, and fully leverage Alliance’s significant in-place infrastructure.”
The increases in starts showed up in the companies filling out the bottom of the top 10:
- No. 6 Fort Washington, Pennsylvania-based Toll Brothers Apartment Living saw its starts increase by 1,500 as it hit 5,250 units.
- No. 7 Charlotte-based Quarterra Multifamily (formerly Lennar Multifamily) started almost 2,500 more apartments as it hit 5,224 units.
- No. 8 Irving, Texas-based JPI reappeared on the NMHC’s top developers list as it jumped by nearly 4,000 starts to 5,051 units.
- No. 9 Cleveland-based The NRP Group started 1,500 more apartments to hit 5,024 units.
- No. 10 Arlington, Texas-based home builder D.R. Horton began more than 1,000 more apartments to hit 4,954 units.
With many developers starting new units, the composition of the NMHC Top 25 list changed dramatically. Eleven companies, including JPI, weren’t on the rankings last year.
So far this year, starts have been somewhat resilient, posting unexpectedly strong results in February. But given the tight credit markets, it’s hard to see many developers increasing their numbers this year.
“Given the state of the capital markets, starts will definitely slow in ’23,” Hiemenz told Multifamily Dive. “Unless we see dramatic change in the economy that we’re not anticipating, we believe bank lending activity for new development — the primary source for construction lending — will be fairly muted for the balance of ’23, and potentially extending into ’24.”
Click here to sign up to receive multifamily and apartment news like this article in your inbox every weekday.