A growing population and the fallout from the last housing meltdown helped push apartment rents higher in the Charleston region.

But today, the rate increases are showing signs of stabilizing.

Charlotte-based multifamily information firm Real Data reported last week that average rents in the region were essentially flat in its latest analysis. The average rate was $902 for March, down $1 from the previous six-month market update in September.

The March average was up 7 percent from the same month a year ago, according to Real Data.

Looking ahead, rates are likely to come under more pressure because some 3,500 rental units are in various stages of completion.

The new product will mean more competition and more modest pricing compared to the past few years, said Adam Monroe of Sullivan's Island-based Middle Street Partners, which recently completed the 270-unit Rivers Walk apartments on Mathis Ferry Road in Mount Pleasant with Memphis-based apartment giant MAA.

The Charleston region's foreclosure rate continues to decline, but the local average remains higher than state and national figures, according to a new report.

Real estate information firm CoreLogic said last week that outstanding mortgage loans were 2.16 percent in the Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville area in January, down from 3.36 percent for the same month a year ago.

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By comparison, the South Carolina and U.S. foreclosure rates averaged 1.93 percent and 1.97 percent, respectively, for January.

In a related trend, the percentage of delinquent home loans continues to fall. About 4.76 percent of mortgages in the Charleston area were 90 days or more behind in January, down from more than 6 percent during the same month of 2013.

Reach Tyrone Richardson at 937-5550 and follow him on Twitter @tyrichardsonPC.