US apartment vacancies hit 5-year lowApartment vacancies in the U.S. fell to a five-year low of 5.6% in Q3 2011, allowing landlords to raises rents slightly even as high unemployment slows leasing in a season that usually has high demand.

The vacancy rate was the lowest in the country since the third quarter of 2006, down from 5.9% in the second quarter this year and 7.1% in the third quarter of 2010.

With the unemployment rate remaining at above 9%, leasing may start to cool. At present, the growing number of foreclosures and tighter credit for buyers are some of the reasons for the drop in vacancies.

Source: Bloomberg