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Notebook and Pen

IMPORTANT STUFF YOU NEED TO KNOW!

Institutional Investors are a growing threat to homeowners


Last week I was in Austin, TX attending Keller William's "Mega Agent Camp". During Gary Keller's keynote talk, they showed a slide exhibiting a burgeoning problem:



Of all the home sales in 2021 in Texas, 28% were to institutional investors. 28%, over 1 out of 4 homes!!! You may be asking yourself why an agent that specializes in the Baltimore to DC Market would be interested in what's happening in Texas.


It's because part of my job is to make sure I understand the real estate market at both a micro AND macro level. This is how we are able to advise our clients in a holistic manner on their various options to reach their goals.


This quote should cause concern for all current and future homeowners:

Research this summer by MetLife Investment Management estimated that institutions owned some 700,000 single-family rentals across the United States in 2022, about 5% of the 14 million single-family rentals nationally. MetLife forecast that by 2030, institutions will increase those holdings to 7.6 million homes, more than 40% of all single-family rentals.

As more institutional investors enter the residential housing sector, they will artificially drive up prices with their Wall Street backed dollars. "But high property values are a GOOD thing for homeowners" you might be saying. Yes it is, but what's going to happen when that existing homeowner is looking to move up? Or the first time homebuyer is looking to purchase their starter home?


Government intervention is needed to keep residential housing accessible to homeowners, not Wall Street investors.


From Costar:


Blackstone’s Single-Family Rental Firm Pauses Some Purchases in Rare Pullback for Surging Property Type

Home Partners Steps Back From Expanding in 38 of Its Less Active Markets

By Mark Heschmeyer CoStar News August 31, 2022 | 2:38 P.M.

Home Partners of America, a single-family rental company owned by private equity giant Blackstone Group, is pausing property acquisitions in 38 markets across the country in a rare sign of a pullback in that surging type of real estate.

Chicago-based Home Partners is stopping purchases in 28 markets beginning Thursday, and another 10 starting Oct. 1. It's a move that reflects a scaling-back while the market for single-family renters keeps attracting institutional capital.

“We assessed several factors such as home price appreciation, state and local regulations, and market demand to guide our investment plans to best serve consumers,” Home Partners said on its website. “We hope to resume purchasing homes in these markets in the future.”

Research this summer by MetLife Investment Management estimated that institutions owned some 700,000 single-family rentals across the United States in 2022, about 5% of the 14 million single-family rentals nationally. MetLife forecast that by 2030, institutions will increase those holdings to 7.6 million homes, more than 40% of all single-family rentals.

The firm does not have a time frame for how long the pause will last or when property purchases might begin again, a spokesperson for the firm said in an email to CoStar News.

“We and Home Partners remain fully committed to expanding access to homeownership and continue to actively purchase homes on behalf of our residents in more than 20 of the highest growth markets in the U.S.,” a spokesperson for Blackstone said in a statement emailed to CoStar News. “We are pausing in markets that represent less than 5% of our recent activity.”

In April, Home Partners securitized a $952.8 million loan in a bond offering tied to 3,724 of the more than 26,000 units in its total portfolio. The properties backing the offering were spread across 51 markets, including Greenville, South Carolina, where the firm is now pausing acquisitions. Different Approach Home Partners differs in its approach to single-family rental acquisitions compared to most other large property owners in the sector. While most firms target specific markets and properties for acquisitions, Home Partners targets renters first by having them identify houses they would like to live in and potentially own, then apply to Home Partners so the firm can buy the property. Home Partners then rents the property to the tenant with an option to purchase.

During the break from buying, Home Partners won’t be taking new applications from potential residents.

Home Partners’ move may have more to do with its unique business model than with the sector overall, Morgan Stanley Research analysts noted in an email to clients. Morgan Stanley said publicly traded single-family rental real estate investment trusts Invitation Homes and Tricon Residential both have recently started rent-to-own programs, but they only make up a small percentage of their portfolios.

“Fewer acquisitions shouldn’t come as a surprise,” Morgan Stanley analysts said. “At [second quarter] earnings, both American Homes 4 Rent and Invitation Homes reduced their acquisition guides for the rest of the year, while Tricon Residential amended their guide from [8,000-plus] homes to about 8,000 homes.”

The business model for large-scale institutional ownership and management of single-family rental properties in the United States was born out of the Great Recession and gained even wider acceptance following the outbreak of COVID-19.

The first securitization of loans backing single-family rental portfolios occurred in 2013, according to Kroll Bond Rating Agency, which has rated 95 such deals since then. None of the loans underlying those deals has ever been 60 or more days delinquent or specially serviced, and 32 securitizations have been repaid in full prior to maturity. In addition, cash flows and the value of the underlying properties in those transactions have generally increased since issuance.

But the trend toward corporate investors scooping up houses has produced a backlash in some cities, where affordable housing advocates have argued that the trend is cutting into the supply of for-sale homes, making homeownership more difficult to achieve. They are calling for greater regulation of that segment of the market, including purchasing restrictions and rent control.


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Content by Vidona Residential Columbia Realtors

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