CHARLOTTE, NC (Ely Portillo/The Charlotte Observer) - Here's the bad news: If you're renting in Charlotte, it's still getting more expensive.
Here's the silver lining: It might be easier to get an apartment, because the vacancy rate is going up as a wave of new buildings hit the market.
That's according to the latest figures from Charlotte-based Real Data, an apartment-tracking service. The average rent in Charlotte as of February hit $1,142 a month, up almost 6 percent from the same month a year ago.
"It's not slowing down a lot... The market seems to be healthy," said Charles Dalton, principal at Real Data. Almost 6,200 new apartments were rented over the past 12 months, about 1,000 fewer than developers built over that time.
The vacancy rate ticked up slightly, however, to 6.9 percent, though Real Data forecasts the rate will hold steady over the next year. That's up from 6.1 percent in Feb. 2016.
Here are five key observations about the apartment market in Charlotte: