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Record Number of Office-to-Apartment Conversions in Major Metros

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Planning + Development

Record Number of Office-to-Apartment Conversions in Major Metros

The urban landscape in many cities is undergoing a shift, with more than a fourfold increase in office-to-apartment conversions since 2021


January 22, 2024
City view with office spaces converted to apartments
Image: jamesteohart / stock.adobe.com

Over the last four years, there's been a sharp increase in the number of office building conversions into living spaces. From 2021 to 2022 alone,  there was a jump from 12,100 converted units to 23,100. The trend continued in 2023 (45,200 units), and appears to be on track for 55,300 units in 2024, according to apartment listing service RentCafe. 

Metros where this type of urban adaptive reuse trend is most prominent include Washington, D.C. (5,820 units), New York (5,215 units), and Dallas (3,163 units), with Chicago, Los Angeles, and Cleveland also making it into RentCafe's top 15 metros for future office-to-apartment conversions underway in 2024. 

Behind this shift lies a crucial factor: the $150 billion in office mortgages due by 2024. As residential space demand surges, developers are leaping at the chance to repurpose these aging giants. Currently, office conversions represent a staggering 38% of the 147,000 apartments in future adaptive reuse projects, outpacing any other building type. That's not just the largest slice of the redevelopment pie—it's a record high since 2020. Clearly, the buzz of business is giving way to the hum of home life, right where the city's heartbeat used to be.

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