Vacancy increased slightly in the 164,300-unit Suburban Maryland apartment market. The fourth quarter 2017 vacancy rate was 3.8%, up 30 basis points from the prior quarter but down 10 basis points from one year earlier. The rate is 4.0% as of January 2018. The average asking rent and the average effective rent posted 0.4% and 0.2% gains in the fourth quarter of 2017 to $1,534 and $1,481 per month, respectively, which were up 2.2% and 1.9% over the year. January 2018 data show 0.5% and 0.4% gains for asking and effective rents.