Throughout the first half of the aughts, U.S. rental property vacancy rates hovered at the high 7% range (between 7.75 and 7.9). With the ’08 crash, vacancy rates jumped substantially, to well over 8%. But since the peak in 2009, vacancy rates have been steadily declining. As I pointed out last week, new houses aren’t being built as quickly as they’re being planned. The net result? We have way too few vacant homes. Of course, some markets are worse off than others, but no matter how you cut it, we need to be building more homes.