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- September 1, 2018: Vol. 10, Number 8

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A place to live: China and India are rental-housing powerhouses in the making

by Peter Verwer

The curtain is about to rise on China and India as rental-housing power­houses. At present, the world’s largest securitised housing sector is in the United States, where REITs encompassing multi­family, manufactured homes and single-family dwellings sport a market cap of more than US$145 billion. Japan’s housing REITs are next, with US$24 billion.

Of course, there’s plenty of rental housing in Europe. While much of it still sits on the balance sheets of governments and institutions, it is also being unlocked. Vonovia, which owns and manages roughly 355,000 homes in Germany, is pioneering a modern capital-markets platform.

In the United Kingdom and Australia, “build-to-rent’’ housing is heralded as the next big thing.

Four factors drive the success of rental housing as an asset class in the United States. The first is scale. More than 3.3 million apartments are managed by professional residential operators, of which about 15 percent are REIT manager

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