2024 WMFHA Legislative Agenda


These are vigorous yet achievable goals for our advocacy efforts. We appreciate your ongoing support to make sure that we are representing the multi-family industry well. 

Here are some valuable resources and data that speak to our goals and approach in 2024:
  • Imposing policies that place an artificial cap on rents can jeopardize the ability of rental housing providers to cover their expenses.
  • In several counties where large amounts of new supply have gone online, rent has decreased according to Washington Center for Real Estate Apartment Market Report
    • Apartment rents declined across WA during the 3rd quarter of 2023, with the rate of growth becoming negative for the first time since Q4 2022.
    • Average rents declined by -0.6% in the Puget Sound region and -0.5% in the rest of the state.
    • In King County, rent growth for one-bedroom units was only 0.2% and -0.5% for two-bedroom units.
    • Vacancy rates have continued to stagnate across the state, averaging 5% statewide, 5.3% in the Puget Sound region, and 4.2% elsewhere in WA.
  • Commerce predicts Washington state needs 1 million new units in the next 20 years
    • Commerce is predicting that there needs to be 60,000 new homes built per year to meet the demand driven by anticipated population growth.
    • Currently the state is only seeing a rate of 30,000 new units built a year
    • The Washington Center for Real Estate research Housing Market Snapshot (Q2 2023) notes a statewide 28% decline year-over-year in multifamily permit issuance, with more than a 50% decline year-over-year in multifamily permit issuance permit issuance in King County
    • The AIA Architectural Billings Index in September was the lowest it has been since December of 2020
    • Large multi-family housing being a part of the solution is the only way to address supply deficits this substantial
  • Costs are increasing for everyone, not just residents and homeowners.
  • The appearance that eviction proceedings are increasing is due to over 2 years of the moratorium, not a sudden desire to evict
    • Evictions are a remedy of last resort for non-payment, safety, or behavioral issues.
    • These aren't due to one month’s failure to pay rent, they are for many months often with back-owed rent in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars
    • Across the state there are tens of millions of rent owed to housing providers
    • OCLA, HJP and certain courts have admitted to slowing down or wanting to slow down evictions
      • Courts are violating the state requirement that eviction hearings are schedule within 30 days