Table of Contents
Urban Studies Research
Volume 2017, Article ID 3073282, 10 pages
Research Article

Determinants of Growth in Multiunit Housing Demand since the Great Recession: An Age-Period-Cohort Analysis

1Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto, 33 Willcocks Street, Toronto, ON, Canada M5S 3B3
2School of Forest Resources and Conservation, University of Florida, 357 Newins-Ziegler Hall, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Shiv N. Mehrotra; moc.liamg@artorhem.vihs

Received 17 June 2017; Accepted 28 August 2017; Published 12 October 2017

Academic Editor: Thomas Panagopoulos

Copyright © 2017 Shiv N. Mehrotra and Douglas R. Carter. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Following the Great Recession (2007–2009), growth in multiunit housing starts has been exceptionally strong and sustained. In this study, we examine empirical evidence for three possible explanations, namely, the passage of Baby Boomers into senior years, the depressed economic conditions, and rising preference of recent birth cohorts for residing in urban cores. Applying Age-Period-Cohort analysis to census data on multiunit housing occupancy from 1970 to 2010, we find evidence to support the explanations that a sharp increase in demand from Millennials drawn to urban cores and retiring Baby Boomers are contributing to the growth in multiunit housing starts. The results provide weak evidence of a negative relationship between depressed economic conditions and demand for multiunit housing starts. Over the long term, demand for multiunit housing can be expected to moderate as a result of the projected aging of the population.