TEXAS (globest.com, Real Estate Center) – Despite nationwide economic woes, construction of multifamily housing is surging throughout Texas.

There are 55,516 units under construction in the four major metros. Currently, 20,585 units are being built in North Texas; 16,282 in Houston; 13,018 in Austin; and 5,631 in San Antonio. Dallas–Fort Worth is seeing its highest building level since 1999.

This adds to the existing inventory of 562,465 units in Dallas–Fort Worth; 162,280 in Austin; 497,010 in Houston; and 136,455 in San Antonio.

Occupancy climbed slightly. Dallas–Fort Worth units held just over 93 percent occupancy; Austin, 94 percent; Houston, nearly 92 percent; and San Antonio, just under 93 percent.

Average monthly rent statewide jumped up $23 to $771. Averages also increased within the four major metros. Dallas–Fort Worth recorded an average of $776; Austin, $838; Houston, $764; and San Antonio, $712.

"The Texas multifamily market has always been highly cyclical," said Dr. Jim Gaines, research economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. "Now we're seeing an uptick because of the slowdown in the single-family housing market. Most of these projects reflect financing put in place before the financial crisis began to escalate. It will be interesting to see if any new projects begin in the new year."