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Survey of Market Absorption of Apartments (SOMA)


The Survey of Market Absorption (SOMA), sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), uses the Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction (SOC) as its sampling base. Each month, a sample of residential buildings containing five or more units is selected for SOMA. The initial 3-month interview collects information on amenities, rent or sales price levels, number of units, type of building, and the number of units taken off the market (absorbed). Field representatives conduct subsequent interviews, if necessary, at 6, 9, and 12 months after completion. Beginning in 2002, the survey started collecting information on “Senior Housing”.

Quarterly reports, including basic tabulations, are published and released on the Internet. These quarterly reports are generally available the first week of March, June, September, and December. Additionally, data on absorption rates for selected metropolitan areas are also released on the Internet at the same time. Pre-publication data, detailing information for regular rental units and condominiums is published approximately one month earlier. There are also two annual publications released on the internet, the H-130 Annual which provides 12-month absorption data for the previous year and is released the first week April and the H-131 Characteristics of Apartments Report which provides annual 3-month absorption rates - released the first week of July.

Contact George Boyd at 301-763-3199 or mail to for further information on the Survey of Market Absorption of Apartments Data.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Social, Economic, and Housing Statistics Division
Last Revised: September 30, 2011