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2020 fourth quarter Denver Metro Apartment Vacancy and Rent Report   

Researchers at the University of Denver’s Daniels College of Business released the fourth quarter Denver Metro Apartment Vacancy and Rent report. In addition to the standard information, the survey collected COVID-related data, which found that most tenants are making their rents and not being evicted.

Results from the standard survey showed an overall quarterly decrease in the average rent, declining to $1,510.26, from $1,521.66 in the third quarter. There was a quarterly increase in vacancy to 5.8% from 4.9%, with a year-over-year increase of 0.5% from 5.30%. The Denver Metro apartment market added 5,811 new units. Net absorption was a respectable 1,912 units for the fourth quarter.

“This is a sizable quarter of unit production and may reflect delays in projects since the onset of COVID-19,” says report author Ron Throupe, associate professor of real estate at the Daniels College of Business. “The overall net absorption of units for the year 2020 was 8,195, a decline from the 10,829 absorbed in 2019, which was also a declining year. In fact, unit growth is now in decline from the 13,708 absorbed in 2018.”

Ron Throupe

As part of a special survey of COVID-19 effects, the survey participants said less than 5% of their tenants were not paying and not evicted.

“There is some erosion of percentage of those paying rent as we moved to the fall as the number of communities experiencing a 5–9.99% of nonpayment once again increased after a pause in the summer,” Throupe says. “A further erosion of rent payment next quarter would indicate that job loss, reduced work or other COVID-19 effects may be reaching a decision point for economic recovery. Likewise, a flattening of rent nonpayment would indicate an economic recovery may be starting.”

The Denver Metro Area Apartment Vacancy and Rent Survey is conducted by the University of Denver’s Daniels College of Business and Colorado Economic and Management Associates. It’s published by the Apartment Association of Metro Denver. 

For interviews with Ron Throupe, please contact Kristal Griffith at To obtain a copy of the Denver Metro Area Apartment Vacancy and Rent Survey report, please contact Christopher Dean, vice president of communications for the Apartment Association of Metro Denver, at 303.329.3300, or visit

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