Publications

- March 1, 2022: Vol. 34, Number 3

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Headline risk: Single-family rental is a promising investment opportunity, but too much attention may be problematic

by Carolyn Marshall

Single-family rental (SFR) homes promise to be a hot commodity in 2022. Investors long to finance or buy them. Families and individuals covet them. Developers are scrambling to find land to build them. Never mind the barrage of negative press in all manner of media, where unsettling news stories trumpet financial dead ends for renters and uncertain blowback for investors. Consider a sampling of recent headlines.

Investors Help Crowd Out Everyday Homebuyers as U.S. Prices Soar (Bloomberg; January 2022) Wall Street is Buying Up Family Homes. The Rent Checks are Too Juicy to Ignore (CNN Business; August 2021) Selling Out: America’s Landlords. Moving in: Big Investors (Reuters; July 2021) Single-Family Rents are Surging, and Investors are Flooding the Market (CNBC; October 2021)

The bad press may cause grumbles and prompt stakeholders to collectively cringe, but there has been little or no pushback. To the contrary, the relatively

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