Steamy Rent Inflation in Single-Family Suburban Houses: Invitation Homes Jacks Up Rents Big Time on its 80,000 Houses

It isn’t buying whole neighborhoods; it’s buying whole new subdivisions of built-to-rent houses.

By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.

In its quarterly earnings report, Invitation Homes [INVH], the largest landlord of single-family houses in the US with over 80,000 rentals spread across 16 large markets, offered some clues – or rather bragged about – how hot rent inflation is in many suburban markets and what kind of rent hikes it can get away with.

I generally cover apartment rents, which tend to be concentrated in urban cores. Those rents have spiked in some markets, and they have plunged in others, such as San Francisco. But this is about the corollary, rental houses in suburban markets – houses that are not at the low end of the market. The average monthly rent across the Invitation Homes spectrum is $1,941 a month.

These single-family rentals presumably received some of the flow of urban apartment dwellers that wanted more space to spread out in, and more distance to others during the pandemic and the shift to working from home.

Invitation Homes jacked up rents on newly signed leases in Q1 on average by 13.8%, with amortized concessions figured into the monthly rent. This is up from a 2.7% average increase in Q2 last year.

The rent increases on new leases varied across its markets, all of them red-hot, but some red-hotter than others, so to speak. Only three of the 16 markets – Minneapolis, Chicago, and Houston – got away with single-digit lease-over-lease rent increases. The remaining 13 markets got double-digit rent hikes.

These average rent hikes ranged from 23.6% year-over-year in Phoenix, 22.1% in Las Vegas, 15.8% in Seattle, 15.8% in Northern California, and 15.6% in Atlanta to at the very low end 8.8% in Minneapolis, 8.6% in Chicago, and 7.4% in Houston.

For tenants who renewed the lease, the company hit them with rent hikes of 5.8% on average, up from 3.5% a year ago.

These rent hikes on renewals ranged from 9.0% in Phoenix, 7.9% in Las Vegas, 6.7% in Atlanta, and 6.2% in Tampa to at the low end 4.6% in Orlando, 4.0% in Chicago, and 0.2% in Seattle.

All combined, new leases and renewals, the company raised rents in Q1 on average by 8.0%, compared to 3.3% last year.

How can Invitation Homes get away with these kinds of rent hikes without having to watch how its houses empty out one after the other?

Strong demand for suburban rentals and the inflationary mindset: everyone knows that inflation is here and getting hot, and stuff costs more, and people are willing to pay more. “People willing to pay more” is one of the founding fathers of an inflation spiral.

Obviously, none of these red-hot rent increases, or just about any other rent increases have made it into the Consumer Price Index, whose CPI for “rents of primary residence” has miraculously cooled down, from the just under 4% range in the years from 2015 through early 2020, to a year-over-year rent inflation of 1.9% in June, and 1.8% in the prior three months – perhaps because of the sharp year-over-year drops in rents in multi-family buildings in many of the biggest urban areas:

Invitation Homes isn’t going around buying thousands of homes, like it used to do during the housing bust, when it got started. In Q2, it bought 494 houses and sold 212 houses, for a net increase of 282 houses – across the US – which brought its total to 80,612 houses.

But just before the earnings report, it announced that it would buy 7,500 houses over the next five years from PulteGroup, the third-largest builder in the US, following the hot trend of built-to-rent single-family-rentals, where builders build entire subdivisions of houses that they then sell to a landlord.

Invitation Homes and Pulte have already agreed on the first 1,000 houses in seven “communities” to be built in Florida, Georgia, Southern California, North Carolina, and Texas, on the hopes that rent inflation for single-family houses in the suburbs will continue to surge.

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  209 comments for “Steamy Rent Inflation in Single-Family Suburban Houses: Invitation Homes Jacks Up Rents Big Time on its 80,000 Houses

  1. The Bob who cried Wolf says:

    We’ve upped the rents on newly signed leases by at least 15% in San Diego. My leasing agent is pushing for the max increases (around 10%) as allowed by law for renewals. This is inflation folks. I don’t see the transitory they keep talking about.

    • Joe in LA says:

      Did your costs go up, or are you just putting the screws on for fun?

      • MCH says:

        He is doing what’s reasonable…. The market is driving rates up. Who are you or anyone else to say otherwise.

        It is everyone’s prerogative. But remember, the market doesn’t give a shit if you were a nice guy five years ago. After all, when the rent inevitably collapses, will the tenant not ask you for a decrease? I mean May be it works if you are both nice guys… but he has pressures too.

        • Beardawg says:

          MCH

          Could not agree more. If the Bobber is getting more rent now when contractors / handymen are charging lawyer rates and Prop taxes going up – apparently that’s just mean? The hate the landlord mentality is an unfortunate epidemic.

          No one is bagging on contractors making 2X what they were making 2 years ago (like the painter who sealed my Beetle Kill wood soffit in 3 hours for $2000). I begrudgingly paid it because I did not want to look paint cans up onto a 20 foot ladder and I was sorta happy that tradespeople are making a killing, whether temporary or otherwise.

          But a landlord making 2% “Net” more in 2021 than they did in 2019 ? That’s just plain greed.

        • Alex says:

          @Beardawg: No landlord spends that much on maintaining a rental property. I live in a rental, and have contacted my landlord for repairs twice in a little over a year. She maybe spent a total of $400, if that. You can calculate all the inflated costs of contracting work, etc., but the increased costs of those things just means the landlords will be less likely to actually make repairs.

          So no, those imaginary “costs” should not be passed onto tenants. And the asking rent does not equate to what someone will actually pay.

          In California, if you price gouge the rent, and someone signs anyway, they may turn into squatters when they cannot actually pay that much over time. In which case, they will live rent free for up to a year.

        • Djreef says:

          Ya, but unfortunately the renter has to move to get the decrease. No one reduces rent on an occupied apartment. That’s how it works.

        • Depth Charge says:

          “…(like the painter who sealed my Beetle Kill wood soffit in 3 hours for $2000). I begrudgingly paid it because I did not want to look paint cans up onto a 20 foot ladder and I was sorta happy that tradespeople are making a killing, whether temporary or otherwise.”

          Dangerous jobs get hazard pay. Once misstep and his life is over. 20 feet is way up there. Any time I’m high on a ladder or up on a roof, the price goes WAY up. If the customer doesn’t like it, they are welcome to shop around. I have no interest in risking my life for pennies.

        • I just had a guy come out and service my AC for $49.

        • Swamp Creature says:

          All you greedy landloards are going to have to do your patriotic duty and suck it up for another 3 months. Get over it. Enjoy!

          “WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives will take up a measure on Friday to extend a COVID-19 eviction moratorium through Dec. 31 that is set to expire Saturday as millions of U.S. households could be forced out of rental homes.”

          “U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday asked Congress to extend the moratorium amid a deadly rise in coronavirus infections.”

        • Nicko2 says:

          That’s why we screen our tenants carefully (with the help of an agency of course); far better to have a happy tenant who will stay longer at the cost of a small amount of rent…..rather than a tenant who is unhappy and will leave, potentially at the loss of a month or more of rent. It’s always a trade off; but much better karma in the long run by not acting like a slumlord. Happy tenant; happy landlord.

        • Beardawg says:

          @Alex

          You proved my point. Tenants hold all the cards, landlords get dealt anything from a skip straight (S***) to a full house (pun intended).

        • Beardawg says:

          Depth Charge

          I know you like to spar in comments (that’s cool). I do not begrudge trades people from making a better than average wage – I dabbled in it myself back in the day. My point is that landlord haters generally take no risks (typically they are tenants and not business people). As such, they just presume all landlords are wealthy. I kinda do consider it gouging when a painter charged $350 for a job 2 years ago and charges $2000 now. It is NOT about the danger factor, it is about what the market will bear. The same way I have no issue with pro athletes making millions / year – because NO ONE else in the world (save a few of their peers) can do what they do.

          Rentals are part of a market – Mom n Pop landlords (like Bob Who Cried Wolf) are in that market. If contractors are bending Bob over, then Bob gotta raise the rent – it’s that simple. Tenants can move or they can avail themselves of the ever-growing list of safety nets and scams which compromise a landlord’s ability to play nice.

          It’s easy to hate the person you fork over $$ to every month. It is a lot tougher to try to understand and/or accept why you need to pay that person. Reasoning and responsibility are in short supply these days.

        • SocalJim says:

          Alex, once I fell from the roof of a second story house. Somehow, when I landed on the grass, I only suffered big bruises and such. My advice: No ladders over 8 ft … never.

      • c1ue says:

        I guarantee costs didn’t go up by 10% of rent charged.

      • rich says:

        I just received this from my property insurance agent:

        “I hope this email finds you well. Please find attached a copy of your upcoming homeowner’s renewal with All Risks, which was $2,434.07 last year. It is renewing for $6,123.24”.

        Additionally, the property taxes on this rental just went up 34%. I pay my property repairman $40 an hour. Should property owners have to eat these expenses, or should they be able to share the pain?

        Inflated property values work for the property owners who are selling their properties, the insurance companies who can raise rates to match higher property values and cover future property repair prices, and local governments who use inflated property prices to increase property taxes.

        • Djreef says:

          You need a new insurer.

        • MCH says:

          @Djreef

          And he needs a bunch of new contractors and a new local government just to make sure they don’t charge as much.

          Cause how dare they raise their prices.

          ?

        • Jeffrey says:

          Is this in a high crime area? My homeowners insurance in only $571 per year for an $800k house.

      • The Bob who cried Wolf says:

        I can assure you that all of our costs went up (except loans that are fixed). Taxes, insurance, maintenance, lost revenue dealing with non paying ones last year, utilities, voluntarily dropping rent amounts by a huge margin for a tenant who’s husband died of covid, etc. The broad brush used to paint landlords as all being a bunch of dicks is getting old. We’re all forced to stay within certain guidelines as to how much we can raise rents, how long we have to keep non paying tenants around, regulations that cost us more and more each year and much much more. If we don’t raise rents now, especially after doing nothing last year (voluntarily I might add) then we will forever fall way behind market rents as we can only ever increase our rents by so much, as mandated by the law of CA.
        I’m no different from any other mom n pop landlord. We all got thrown under the bus big time last year and still are. You didn’t see mandates to give away free gas, water, food, etc last year. We were targeted by the govt to provide free housing with complete disregard for what our costs were.
        Thank you to all of you who came to to my defense, but also to the defense of any other landlord who’s been unnecessarily castigated as evil. We’re a business like every other business and costs have gone up big time.
        I know this’ll stir the pot a little, but even the jerks at invitation and other hedge funds ones needed to raise rents. They’re beholden to their investors, many of whom are small time stake holders. Anyone with a 401k, some sort of mutual fund, public employee investment funds, etc, owns these in some sort of capacity. Inflation is here and if you don’t utilize your investment to hedge inflation you’ve done yourself and your investment a huge disservice.

        • Alex says:

          California allows landlords to raise rent up to 10% per year. When the average rent for a one bedroom apartment is $2300, that is a $483 per month increase after 2 years, which is plenty.

          It is perfectly reasonable for landlords to raise rent each year due to inflation. The issue is not with adjusting for inflation up to a 10% increase. The issue is with landlords who kick out paying tenants to jack up the rent 40% or more for new tenants. Those landlords exasperate the housing crisis and invite increased rent control measures.

          There is a local apartment complex near UC San Diego that had one bedrooms listed for $2150 in April 2021. They are now listed for $3400… for a one bedroom. I’m seeing that with a lot of apartment complexes and with rentals managed by property management companies. That is predatory price gouging, and there are no excuses for that.

        • Fat Chewer says:

          Bob, I have no reason to doubt what you are saying, but then I wonder why are private companies buying entire subdivisions to turn into rentals. It must be quite lucrative or they wouldn’t bother.

        • MCH says:

          Alex,

          On the face of it, the CA law seems fair. Here is the problem. The law assumes that inflation is at a reasonable rate. For years, that was the case, it is no longer, while inflation isn’t approaching 10% yet, it could get much worse.

          Remember, there are also ways to skirt rent control laws if push came to shove. It happened in SF for a while when tech millionaires bought up a bunch of housing, kicked out the tenants using the remodel excuse or sale or whatever in order rent properties at market rates. It ended up pushing a whole bunch of families out, and in some ways exacerbated the homeless problem.

          So, the question is what to do about all this? How should government help to get this solved?

          The answer is simple, the government should not get involved, every attempt to do so invariably end in some form of disaster. The consequences far outweigh the benefits.

          Bottom line: the government needs to control larger corporations to an extent via anti-trust, but otherwise need to generally let the market function and get out of the way. If you don’t believe how disastrous government intervention can be, just look at the last 12 months. A small hiccup was blown up into an unmitigated disaster. Who does anyone think all of that stimulus and the resulting inflation will hurt the most, I will give you a hint, it’s not the 1%.

        • c1ue says:

          Meh – my rent got raised over 100% from 2015 to 2018.
          I had been a tenant there for 7 years at that point.
          So sorry if I don’t cry over your problems…not.
          Yes, I know there are people who are decent landlords – but again you get the bones with the chicken.

        • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

          LLs are like all people: Many are dicks, some are not.

        • MooMoo says:

          Fat Chewer (below):

          Bob, I have no reason to doubt what you are saying, but then I wonder why are private companies buying entire subdivisions to turn into rentals. It must be quite lucrative or they wouldn’t bother.

          ….its because they won’t touch government bonds…and, well, the money has to go somewhere…same reason equities keep screaming higher….it’s NOT about p/e or anything like that…its just capital flowing.

    • Djreef says:

      The CPI lie continues. If you don’t rent or lease you’d never even know.

      • Krystyn Podgajski says:

        Sorry, but no. I am homeless and live in a van. I have been talking about the hidden and obvious inflation to my friends years. It has only gotten worse.

        • Trailer Trash says:

          I see there are lots of renters living in tents and cars. Not many landlords doing that.

        • Jeff says:

          Renters living in tents? They’re renting the tent?

        • Lynn says:

          LOL, in my neck of the woods some ARE renting tents. They get more privacy and safety than in the ever expanding homeless camps in the forest.

          Usually it’s work trade for rent. But labor is still rent. It’s a feudal system around here.

    • sc7 says:

      Yet people here still think “the big crash” is coming and these houses are going to magically plummet in value. It is far more likely that the negative impact of all of this is simply this painful inflation and a further concentration of wealth.

      Those waiting for the crash on here have paid years more of rent, while the cost of a home they could buy has only gotten further out of reach.

      • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

        Give me a break. The future is Unknown.

        Nobody knows what will happen.

        You saying “You’re wrong, my version is right.” is just as useless as all the other hot air blowing around. I heard the same yarn you spin last time around and then saw a property next door that sold for $3M, sell for $350K.

        The future is unknown.

      • MooMoo says:

        ..they are moving out of government bonds.

        .its not just ‘inflation.’

      • Ethan in NoVA says:

        If there is mass disruption to jobs, then the rents and mortgages will not be getting paid.

    • Vic says:

      In NY the mean average for a rented house (1-2 bdrm) is upwards of $4,000 monthly. No energy costs are included. These houses remain stagnant for long periods of time until they fall into neglect and disrepair by the owner or managing bank/realtor.

    • raxadian says:

      Just be thankful the law gives him a limit.

  2. Junior says:

    what will the rent and mortgage forbearance end in 2 days do to this?

    • NashRes says:

      I’m in Nashville and seen two fairly large communities such as this spring up. One is two doors down while the other is two miles away. This market change is baffling to me, but I guess the money is there. It seems as though this trend will continue to grow.

    • Alex says:

      Vacancies will increase, which will lower the rental rates. But this impact will likely not be seen in states with their own moratoriums, like California.

  3. breamrod says:

    I hear Biden is already asking for an extension. This will get interesting. I guess in the end the gov. will pay your rent?

    • Depth Charge says:

      At this point in time I am starting to think I’m the fool for paying my rent. What’s to stop people from just stiffing the landlord from now on? Paying is for suckers.

      • Alex says:

        When Newsom announced that 100% of back rent would be paid for tenants who skipped rent payments for the last year, I also regretted paying my rent. But there’s a catch to everything. If you read the actual AB832 bill, it says the state has until 2025 to pay the landlords, but the tenants are not protected from eviction until then. In fact, they are only protected until Sept 30th, 2021.

        So landlords can take the government money and issue non renewals to the nonpaying tenants. And nothing is going to stop those landlords from providing negative references. Those tenants will still have a difficult time renting after they are evicted, even if it is just via a non renewal.

        • KGC says:

          If you contract to pay rent, and then do not pay that rent, and the worst thing that happens is at some point you have to leave and get a negative reference I think you’ve got off easy.

        • Alex says:

          @KGC:

          Lol! Touché.. however, that’s assuming the state succeeds in actually paying the landlords before eviction proceedings take place, and it assumes all the past due tenants will be approved. I think many will not get the money and will be evicted anyway

        • c1ue says:

          I know someone who builds and then manages multi-unit rentals for a hedge fund. They have yet to receive a single CA state government rental assistance check.
          I read elsewhere that only 8% have been granted.
          So net net: neither renters nor landlords should hold their breath.

        • MooMoo says:

          ‘negative references’???

          ..try, “social credit score”

          they will mark you and you will pay eventually..oh, yes.

        • Andy the Car says:

          @KGC, do you really think there are that many people out there who want to be deadbeats? Stereotypes so often get blown out of proportion on public forums.

          Sure, there are always the bottom-feeders out for whatever they can get, but I’d wager a lot more would see negative references and the sheer humiliation of having to leave—not to mention the stress of not knowing where to go next—as something to avoid.

          I know I would. I’ve been with the same landlord for 14 years. Ten years ago, I got into a tight spot and was honest with him. We worked it out. If it ever came to a point where I knew I’d have to leave because my income was going in the toilet and I had no hope of recovery, I’d give him a heads up. He deserves that much.

    • Argus says:

      Biden’s extensions look to me like a stealthy introduction of Universal Basic Income.

    • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

      Of course not.

      Why people like you choose to humiliate yourself on the internet by saying such dribble is a real mystery to me. Turn off Tucker and think for yourself.

  4. Say It Aint So says:

    There is a conspiracy theory here…as some feel the Govt will come in and bail out all of these “renters” from the mean old Landlord…thereby the creation of the socialist neighborhood….and the continuation of the transition to a socialists type society…

    • c1ue says:

      California has a state program to pay rent in arrears from April 2020 to March 2021. The city of SF has a program to pay rent in arrears from April 2021 to September 2021.
      But as I note above, the actual payments are few and far between to date.

    • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

      More ignorance.

      If the govt didn’t do anything to assist people during a global pandemic, you’d be whining about that too.

  5. Micheal Engel says:

    1) INVH reached $40/share, a new all time high.
    2) INVH market cap reached $23.1B.
    3) $23.1B/80,000 homes = 288K each.
    4) The average rent : $1941. Annually : $23.3K.
    5) yield : 23.3K/288K = 8%. the average rent hike on renewed lease : 6%.
    6) If the market cap tank by 30%, with 6% higher rent :
    7) $16B market cap/80,000 homes = $200K.
    8) Rent : $1941 x1.06 = $2060.
    9) P/E = 10.3% / US10 = 1.3%
    10) INVH ==> LVMH Moet Hennessy Champagne.

    • cb says:

      Your yield does not account for expenses, so it way overstated.

    • DR says:

      INVH sold for about $16/share in March of ’20. I won’t be surprised if we see that again, at some point.
      This economy is in fantasy land.

  6. John Beech says:

    Mom’s been bent over by deadbeat renters who have not paid. So we’ve been picking up the slack (subsidizing her) in the meanwhile. As for me? I can’t wait for the forbearance period to end because I think it’s a crock that an 86 y/o widow with three small rentals supplementing her meager retirement income is carry deadbeats. FWIW, one bought a new car instead of paying rent and another bought a new flatscreen (not that I begrudge anyone a television but he got a freaking LG OLED paying a bit over $3000 but in the meantime, nothing for rent). The system is so messed up!

    As for the investment company jacking up rents? More power to them because rent pricing is cyclical and come a slow down, rents will go down as landlords are forced to accomodate their clients. That, or they’ll go broke and the assets will come to market offering yet another chance for price discovery.

    The wheel turns and the only real stick in the spoke is government interference.

    • Old School says:

      Watched “Inflation Guy” interview. He said rents always slowly follow house prices. It’s going to be interesting how Fed dances around PCE if higher housing feeds into CPI and PCE calculations.

      • Depth Charge says:

        The FED’s calculations are such a crock that they don’t have to “dance” at all. The calculations ARE the dance. They cook up a bunch of BS so they don’t have to answer to their failings.

    • c1ue says:

      Wow, a poor grandmother with 3 rentals – and presumably the home she lives in now.
      That totally is worse than the 80-year olds on the street, or the 80-year olds living on $800 Social Security in $500/month rent controlled flats in SF.
      /sarc

      • leanFIRE_Queen says:

        Thank you for being the voice of reason.

        The landlord is likely a NIMBY, so society would be better off without them anyway.

        • Nacho Libre says:

          What’s wrong with you two?

          @queen, you don’t even know this person and already assume she is a NIMBY? And say society is better off without her?

          @noclue, are you jealous that a lady is trying live on her own without being dependent on others? Perhaps try to see her as a role model – work hard, save up and stay independent.

        • c1ue says:

          @Nacho Libre
          Wow, project much?
          All I noted is that someone with 3 or 4 fully owned properties – can hardly be called poor or in any kind of dire financial situation, especially compared to people who are genuinely poor.
          And no, I don’t feel sorry. The price of being a landlord is the risk of having an empty rental.
          Deal with it.
          This doesn’t even get into the Proposition 13 nonsense in California. If said granny bought those properties in the 1970s, the property tax on them is lower than the average monthly rent.
          So in reality, these properties could be rented for very, very little.
          If they’re empty, they’re empty because they’re priced too high.
          Drop the price – the problem goes away.

        • Nacho Libre says:

          @Clueless,

          You are using false equivalency. Just because there are poor octogenarians out there, you are suggesting it justifies defrauding someone else? If a deadbeat renter stiffs this lady, how does that help the homeless?

          If someone punches your face and steals your phone will you cry or feel content thinking you are better off than all the poor people who can never purchase a phone?

          You have no idea how much she is charging, how much she spends on maintenance, taxes etc do you? You have no idea how much hard work and planning went into building a retirement support system. You just took a broad brush and painted every landlord out there as greedy, soulless bloodsucker.

        • intro90 says:

          The mom and pop landlords are the best, just wait people until the wall street takes over.

          I had a rental that I spent $10k on renovating. Then I got a new tenant who pretty much destroyed the house. He was there 4 years. It cost $35k to fix it the damage.

          Guess how much I charged that renter a month. $650. Guess what my profit per year was after expenses. $2k

          Do the math. 4x2k = $8k of profit against $10k + 25k = $35k loss. So I am $27k under water. It may take 10 years to get back to even.

          Screw the landlord haters.

        • c1ue says:

          @Nacho Luchador
          There is no false equivalency.
          You still try to paint the poor, 3 or 4 house owning granny as somehow being victimized.
          Either you are a wannabe slum lord yourself or one of the “I, for one, Welcome our new overlords” types.
          As I’ve said before: I have no problem with rent control being abolished if Proposition 13 is also abolished.
          What people like you don’t seem to get is that Landlrods are rentiers. Rentiers are bad for all of society.

        • c1ue says:

          @intro90
          Let’s see: $650/month = $7880 a year in rent paid. You say you had $2K profit meaning you have $5880 a year in expenses.
          What did you pay for the property? Likely well under $100K. Or you have a low interest rate mortgage, in which case your cash is leveraged significantly and the $2K on top of paying the mortgage is even better.
          Meh, can’t say that I’m feeling your pain.
          Damages – terrible but that’s what it is.

      • Paul says:

        c1ue, the cognitive dissonance coming from your posts is palpable.

        What’s next to come out of your keyboard? The food is too expensive and the farmers need to suck it up?

        You were given numbers that contradict the things you say directly. “Meh!” you said, “who cares?!”. OK. I can say that my experience as a “landlord” renting out a house I could not sell after the crash, directly mirrors intro90s. My brother’s who owned a duplex, same thing (in his case someone broke all the windows, tore up the furniture, painted a swastika and other racist shit on the walls and set it on fire). My brother’s never made more than $20/hour in his life (and he’s in his late 40s), the rental was his “keeping-up-with-the-yuppie-professional-white-collar-workers-plan”. Guess it backfired (pun intended). We *know* it was one of the tenants (cops could give two fucks). Yes, it was in the ghetto, the same ghetto we lived in for a chunk of our childhood, but don’t call us slumlords, that’s just how us poor folk live. The first 7 years of my landlordship, I lost on average 4-6K per year. The last 2, I’ve managed to come out ahead with between 2-3K per year (which I lavishly spent on paying the principal down on my new mortgage; hey at least its something!). Many years, renters (some were family) paid nothing because I was a “nice guy” and charged them what they could afford (a mistake I will not repeat). People like me, intro90, my brother, are much more common than the elusive millionaire-hedgefund-landlord you keep reading about in the media.

        • c1ue says:

          Still feeling zero sympathy.
          As I’ve noted elsewhere – I’ve had rentals in my family. From that experience (inspired by the 500+ rental customer), my parents discovered they simply have no interest in being landlords.
          For every success, there were 2 or 3 headaches – since bringing in a bad tenant is precisely the landlord’s fault.
          Equally, the story you tell is one of someone who drank the Kool-Aid in the real estate bubble runup to the GFC.
          Managing rentals is something you have to like doing – and I know those who both enjoy doing so and still have a soul.
          I myself rented my own house for 2 years when I was transferred overseas; my tenant was an ex-co worker who paid less than the mortgage was costing me because I knew he would take great care of the place.
          When he got laid off and moved back home to the Caribbean, I sold the place for 25% gain – which only wound up offsetting the interest payments I had made up to that point – because I knew managing a rental from across the Pacific ocean was a bad idea.
          So you can try and lecture me all you want about the “poor landlords” – I will have none of it.
          I know exactly what a good tenant is worth – and I also know exactly what sons of bitches landlords are who deliberately drive up rent super high in order to convert oddball lofts into communes.
          The primary reason the landlord drove my up rent despite my having literally been the 1st or 2nd to move into the building was because they had been converting all the other multi-room lofts into communes where 3 or 6 people would live in a place formerly occupied by one family.

    • Depth Charge says:

      Lessee – who do I feel more sorry for, the 86 year old widow with 4 properties, or the young person with no hope of ever even buying a single property for shelter and who has to triple up with roommates just to survive?

      That being said, I think the whole moratorium is a crock, too. It is rewarding deadbeats and punishing the prudent. Like the people who are still working and have been diligently paying rent, and the working people who can’t find a rental because they’re all occupied by deadbeats for free.

      I know this: After what I’ve seen of the CDC overstepping its authority and being allowed to interfere with contract law, I would never want to be a landlord. You can just have your property taken from you on a whim by bureaucrats who have no legal right to do so.

      • VintageVNvet says:

        EXACTLY DC!!!
        Been a LL, and now retired, and now will not ever rent again,,,
        IF and only if I cannot get com fort able with the SM again, being out of stocks since the 1980s when I realized I was a mere hiccup to the big boys, etc., etc.,,
        WE, the family WE, will only invest in vacant land,,, and trust me, even that is becoming a challenge as folks are now squatting on land now,,,
        besides the squatting in houses, apts, etc., as has been done for eva in CA and London and AL and FL and TN to my certain knowledge on both sides of the squat equation.
        Reading it is and has been happening all over EU for eva also.
        ”Saint Peter don’t ya call me, cause I can’t go,,, owe my taxes to the GUV MINT sto.” either way, ”they” gonna get any property, real or financial unless YOU pay the rent/mortgage/taxes, while the squatters will take it from you otherwise…

      • Beardawg says:

        DC

        Could not agree with you more on this post. How did we all agree to let CDC legislate ?? Still baffles me today.

      • c1ue says:

        I am sure there are individuals with 1 or 2 properties who genuinely are suffering from the eviction moratorium.
        I am even more sure that the vast majority of rental owners are corporations and/or wealthy people.
        I bleed for them, but I won’t say from where…
        You’re never going to convince me that a profit-seeking landlord is worthy of much sympathy – particularly in a state where their primary cost, property tax, is capped such that long time property owners are both local tax deadbeats and low cost basis to start with.
        In Texas, the 3% property tax actually lowers rent because it forces landlords to ensure properties are occupied as much as possible. Being forced to pay real money in property taxes changes the calculus vs. maximizing rent imposed.

        • Nacho Libre says:

          “I am sure there are individuals with 1 or 2 properties who genuinely are suffering from the eviction moratorium.”

          Good! See, it’s not that hard to keep an open mind.

          “I am even more sure that the vast majority of rental owners are corporations and/or wealthy people.”
          Now, that’s your assertion. 75% of single and double unit places are owned by individuals. not by LLCs, not by corporations.

        • c1ue says:

          75% of single and double unit is meaningless in the context of the overall market.
          Nor is ownership by individuals mean lots of 1 or 2 rental owning people.
          My mother was a very successful real estate broker.
          One of her best clients is a little old lady who would buy broken down properties in the 1980s for $5K or so. She would put in $2K or so in improvements then charge $500/month.
          Her plat book in the county is 2 inches thick – well over 500 units last I saw.
          So sorry, not going to accept random stats at face value.

        • Nacho Libre says:

          My bad, I will ignore the comprehensive Harvard university study. I will accept anecdotal data from somebody’s relative’s realtor as truth instead.

        • c1ue says:

          Yes, you clearly are basing your views on theory and not reality.
          I actually know people who both build and manage multi-unit rentals;
          I also actually know people who are slumlords, who are individuals/couples who own 3 digits of homes and people who skate along because their parent(s) bought 5 houses in the 1970s.

          But let’s look at your Harvard study which your 2 second Google search brought up:

          It says: “because the share of rental properties owned by individual investors tends to decrease with the property size, individual investors owned less than half (47.8 percent) of rental units, followed by LLPs, LPs, or LLCs (33.2 percent), trustees for estates (3.3 percent), real estate corporations (3.3 percent), and nonprofit organizations (3.2 percent).”

          So no, it isn’t 74.4% of rentals owned by individuals.

          But the bigger problem is that this is a survey. Surveys are voluntary – thus are extremely unreliable in understanding what is really out there.

          The Harvard report is based on the US Census 2015 Residential Housing Finance Survey, which says there are 45,543,000 rental units accounted for.

          Can we believe the total number of rental units? No. We know there are 125M+ households in the US; 45,543,000 is too suspiciously close to the commonly believed homeownership percentages and is most likely a “modeled” number.

          Can we believe that the corporations, LLCs and what not all filled out the US Census survey? No, because corporations and LLCs don’t get US Census surveys.

          Are there other sources of data that might contain this information? Yes – real assets by LLPs and Corps have to be listed in tax returns, so the multi-ownership numbers are believable. But real assets on the individual side are not required to be listed although rental income is supposed to be reported. What percent of rental income is not reported? Good question.

          From the same Harvard study group:

          https://www.jchs.harvard.edu/sites/default/files/jchs_americas_rental_housing_2013_1_0.pdf

          “While households of all incomes rent their homes, it is nonetheless true that a disproportionate share of renters have low incomes. Nearly half (46 percent) of renters have incomes below $30,000, including 22 percent with annual incomes below $15,000 (roughly equivalent to working year-round at the minimum wage) and 24 percent earn-ing between $15,000 and $30,000. By comparison, only 30 percent of all households have incomes this low. ”

          So if nearly half of all renters are low income – then a huge percentage of the “2nd home” renters are also slum lords. Nice.

          Sympathy meter increase = negative.

        • Nacho Libre says:

          You are moving goalposts. Discussion clearly was about 1-2 rental owning people. And that percentage is 75% as I said. 48% is overall units.

          Despite what’s on your mind, nobody is looking for sympathy, so keep that meter to yourself. I am just demanding that government stay out of this and stop encouraging the steal. Landlords work with tenants all the time – not raising rent, reduced rent for maintaining yard, etc.

          And for renters being poor, yes, else they would be buying up their own house. But you make it sound like that’s somehow a problem created by their landlords. That’s the false equivalency I called out earlier. One 80yr landlord grandma has nothing to do with the misfortune of another grandma who is poor.

          When you usee cheap words like ‘slumlords’ to describe all landlords, you aren’t helping yourself or your cause, whatever that is.

    • Jon says:

      My friend in San Diego owns two rentals and both of the tenants are not paying rent for last 1 year plus

      He wants to sell the property as soon as he can evict

      • jeffrey says:

        You can evict the tenants upon sale of the house, no reason to wait. I just sold a rental and could have been required to give the tenants notice if the new buyer requested but he kept them on. I could have evicted them at the time of sale but he can not.

        • VintageVNvet says:

          Maybe so j, but just read about an owner paying a tenant $475,000.00 to get them out of a place in SF.
          Reminded me of a client who had to buy out the tenants in a SFR in berzerkeley back in the late ’80s, so he and his family could move into the place…
          Don’t feel sorry for that guy though, because he bought a really nice large house for peanuts– due to the tenants– and it just sold for $4MM,,, likely at least 20X .

        • Alex says:

          San Diego has a complete eviction ban in effect that goes beyond the state ordinance. So you cannot evict a tenant to sell the house. They can only be evicted if they are an imminent danger to others.

          That being said, I think there will be a wave of inventory to hit the housing market when the eviction ban is lifted.

        • sc7 says:

          Alex,

          Most of that inventory will be rental stock. Single family home inventory will barely be impacted.

        • Alex says:

          sc7: owners who are renting out their SFH, but want to sell, have to wait until the eviction ban expires to sell. There are many of those in San Diego. I am currently renting one. Inventory will increase when the eviction ban expires

      • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

        I’ve been on both sides. Been a tenant living in places w/good and terrible LLs.

        I’ve been a LL w/both good and terrible tenants.

        You might try what my friend in FL does: Month to month leases.

        With one of those, you CAN evict right now. So instead of signing your property away for 6 months or a year…go month to month and you can evict, evict, evict all you want!

        • Alex says:

          So the eviction ban in San Diego applies to non renewals too. In California, a non renewal is called a “no fault eviction”. Any action the landlord takes that results in the tenant needing to move out is referred to as an eviction, even if it doesn’t require legal action.

          So, no.. he cannot evict evict evict right now. No one can, even if there is no active lease

    • Ethan in NoVA says:

      Sell the houses to people that will live in them then.

  7. Prue Grubstreet says:

    I wonder at what point people will show up in front of state houses bearing signs that read, “Fed: Stop Inflating Away My Future!” I know I’ve thought about it many times these past few months. The past 18 months have seen folks protest en masse for social justice issues — why not economic issues? Were the protests of last year fueled by Covid-induced boredom? Or are people still too comfortable? How much can they bear in terms of obscene rents and mortgages? (And for mom-and-pop landlords: how long can they bear not receiving rents?) It just seems odd that Occupy Wall Street, as flawed as it was, was really that last time you saw people protesting the unfair nature of the economy. And goodness knows things have only grown worse…

    • Petunia says:

      The unspoken truth about the rent increases is the good tenants are the ones punished for paying on time. The bad tenants don’t care about the increases because they are not paying anyway.

      Enjoy the increases because rent control is right around the corner and supported by both the good and bad tenants.

      • Alex says:

        Exactly. Landlords can brag about raising rent 20% or more all they want, but they are only inviting government interference.

        • The Bob who cried Wolf says:

          Just stating facts, not bragging. Nor did I brag about all the losses I had to endure 12 years ago. Just because some years are good doesn’t mean all years are good. This is a risky business.

    • leanFIRE_Queen says:

      > why not economic issues?

      It’s solvable, it just takes a bit of time.

      Switched to remote work, relocated to a LCOL and now I’m enjoying DEFLATION across the board.

      The NIMBYs in HCOL literally work for me now, which is fantastic!

      • c1ue says:

        Glad it is working out, but the danger with remote work has always been further relocation to India.

        • Paul says:

          This is a silly view. If you’re that easily replaceable by random worker in India, your employer would’ve *already* made it happen.

        • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

          That’s utter BS. I’ve been WFH since 2000.

          Every single person at the company I work…..all WFH.

          It makes more sense for everybody involved. Only the very elderly seem not able to wrap their minds around it. Sort of like the buggy driver when the car showed up.

  8. Tom Stone says:

    There ‘s a difference between being willing to pay more and being able to pay more.
    It’s not just Real Estate, every single market is becoming increasingly volatile and thus increasingly fragile.
    In the middle of a Pandemic that has every sign of becoming much worse because our response to Covid 19 has been and is characterized by gross incompetence, greed and dishonesty.
    If you haven’t noticed , having two cohorts, one vaccinated and able to survive a much more virulent and deadly strainof the virus than the other is the ideal way to breed a much more lethal strain of Covid at a time the CDC has pissed away any credibility it may have once had.
    And anyone want to place a bet on the build quality of those Pulte homes or the amount of maintenance they will need over the next decade or two?

    • Petunia says:

      I would expect the quality to be as low as legally possible. Also expect the cost of repairs to be transferred to tenants. I would avoid these rentals like the plague.

  9. Micheal Engel says:

    11) Build 1K, take profit on 1/3, sell 25K, open the champagne.

  10. c1ue says:

    5.8% is nothing. My landlord doubled my rent from 2015-2018.
    I have a friend who builds and manages apartment buildings for hedge/investment funds – she tells me that nobody is paying and that no one has seen any of the CA state government “rental assistance” checks yet.
    From other news, supposedly 8% have been paid out.
    If we don’t get another lockdown and eviction moratorium in October (after the recall election for Gavin Newsome), there will be an enormous wave of evictions.
    Overall, I can’t say that I feel much sympathy for landlords charging more for monthly rent than their annual property tax. I’d be fine with getting rid of rent control in tandem with killing Proposition 13…
    Interesting times.

    • Beardawg says:

      c1ue

      I read all your comments and was going to tongue-in-cheek address you as “c1ue-less.”

      You know an apartment builder, I do not. In my mind that gives you some cred.

      However….

      As you allude to yourself, and as other “pro-landlordians” have commented, rental real estate in America was supposed to be an investment, often times a risky one.

      I took the dive 20 years ago and can I tell you some stories. Not all profits and champagne, that’s for damn sure.

      We are now at a point where it is not a chicken or egg argument. Our hapless leaders decided market discovery (for anything) is old school. First eviction moratorium, then dry the tears of decimated landlords with rent guarantees, then the Pulte and Invitation Homes players come in and sop up the gravy.

      Moral of the story? Mom n Pop (like first commenter Bobber) are either benefactor or victim, depending on the winds of change, which they no longer control, nor can they influence. S-Corp-ions (Invitation / Pulte) are just doing what scorpions do.

      Bobber is a minnow in a big lake who might be getting an extra fly in his belly today….but he is ALWAYS in danger of being swallowed up himself.

      • c1ue says:

        @Beardawg
        I am not an advocate of socializing all land ownership like in China today or in Russia post October revolution.
        Nor have I ever said that all landlords are bastards and should die.
        The situation we are all in today is the outcome of decades of economic mismanagement, regulatory neglect and overall half-assedness by our leaders.
        At the same time, I don’t have any patience for limousine liberals. The last election saw the passage of Prop 22 and the failure of Prop 15 – a perfect storm of anti-progressive activity from a supposedly liberal state. This exactly underlines what kind of “liberal” really exists in California.
        My family has had rentals – I know all about deadbeat renters, damaged property, cash flow losses while rentals sit empty etc.
        At the same time, I also understand the math. Asset price inflation plus a sufficiently priced rental = high leverage on cash investment.
        The smart landlords charge below market, but ideally somewhat above actual costs including mortgages because the asset price inflation plus Prop. 13 is how they make real money.
        However, what I see more and more are the cap rate landlords: those who buy/build property with the expectation of charging 5% or more + inflation + whatever the fuck they feel like extra.
        Those, I have no patience for whatsoever.
        Nor am I particularly enthused about the generational impact of said asset price inflation + Prop. 13 on schools, on the owners, on the society around these properties, etc.
        San Francisco, for example, is supposedly fabulously wealthy. Expensive properties, high rent, etc.
        Yet it has godawful schools. Why? Prop 13. is a major reason. Go to Zillow.com and browse around the top of Pacific Heights – you’ll see just how little property tax most of those houses pay despite being worth a minimum $5M.
        San Francisco is also filled with homeless; poop capital of the US, etc etc.
        The only saving grace is that we don’t have a high murder rate like Chicago or Philadelphia. Yay!
        I ran an in-home senior care service for a while – failed but I met a ton of really poor seniors living in rent controlled properties. 85 year old ladies who used to cut the hair of the Getty princesses in the 1970s, now living on $800 Social Security of which $580 went to her landlord for a super nice, 2 bedroom, 1 bath flat in prime Cow Hollow. An Asian couple living in a 2 bedroom, 1 bath flat a bit below the crest of Nob Hill/edge of Chinatown.
        The former – her landlord was a good person and kept up the property overall as nicely as the lady kept the inside.
        The latter – the couple’s landlord prohibited them from using electrical appliances to cook (no gas installed either) to try and force them out – so that rent could be jumped up 10x or 20x.
        There is an entire practice of squeezing out rent controlled tenants in SF.
        My views aren’t based on theory or even narrow experience of the sector.

  11. David Hall says:

    U.S. median household income in 2020 was $68,400. That is up from $63,300 in 2019.

    U.S. median household income was c. $42,000 in 2000.

    Stimulus checks put money in people’s accounts. Social Security recipients wait for cost of living allowance raises.

    The FHA 30 yr. mortgage rate is 2.5%.

    There are sporadic reports of stock market and housing bubbles as incomes rise.

    • Prue Grubstreet says:

      So do you believe the Fed’s line that they are goosing inflation to goose incomes? That we’ve actually been experiencing prolonged deflation due to globalization, and that it’s high time that incomes finally rise — and this is why the Fed is allowing inflation to run hot? I’ve heard this theory numerous times, and I’m still wondering what to think about it.

      • David W. Young says:

        The Fed has basically lost control of the animals in the Circus. These guys thought they were Kings of the Monetary Universe, and that they would just pull a tool or two out of their tool bag (or invent a new tool) to quell the bleating Inflation Genies. But now their flooding of the financial system and economy with uber-cheap money is having a very deleterious side effect, a gross reduction in purchasing power that affects those at the bottom of the income ladder the most. Their close buddies at the top of the income ladder are more than able to afford these price increases based on their net worth explosions from Fed monetary manipulations.

        I really don’t think we have been experiencing a generally deflationary environment over the past two decades as cheap goods from China and abroad really haven’t cancelled out the rise in local taxes, insurance costs, healthcare spending, and automotive purchase prices, new or used. One cannot reasonably use the Government’s CPI figures since substitution adjustments, hedonic fudges, and anything related to Housing Costs, Ownership or Rental, is about as founded in reality as the next CDC announcement.

        My cable bill for analog TV in 2002 was $57 per month. Just paid my recent bill, for digital (about $20 more than analog) of $139. My USAA Medicare Supplemental premium started at $135 in 2015, this month it is $195 per month. Overall, we have been subjected to positive inflation from 2000 on, and now we are stuck with 6% annual rates and going higher. Keep your eye(s) on the petroleum complex! It is going to bite us in the butt big time this Fall and Winter. Fed take another bow.

        • Augustus Frost says:

          I solve the problem of increasing expenses like cable by getting rid of it, when I can do so. Right now, I am stuck paying it because my 81 YO mother can’t use anything besides TV and can barely use a remote. It’s about to increase from a $62 month “introductory” offer to $117. It’s mostly garbage anyway which is why I do not even want it.

    • Trucker guy says:

      So the household income was up 5100 dollars annually in a year…. Meanwhile each person got 3200 in stimulus checks at a minimum. Two people in a house got 6400 so the actual wages were down if you subtract stimulus checks. Let alone the stuff with kids.

      Wages and general income likely fell overall but statistic manipulation makes it a okay. How quaint.

    • Nicko2 says:

      Those are terrible stats; no wonder the American middle class has been decimated. Contrast to Canada, median family income during the same time period doubled —- and of course, we had no housing crash or banking crisis (nor will we).

  12. Paulo says:

    Gotta make profits on:
    Food
    Shelter
    Clothing
    Medicine
    Healthcare
    Education
    Transportation
    Legislation
    Whatever….

    Anything else is that durn sochulism Pappy warned me about, and shortly after that is hell and ruination. Don’t even mention that S word in this here Country. (pssst, but don’t say anything about farm subsidies, oil industry subs, deficit Govt budgets, the MIC, lobby groups, the TAX regime…….)

    It all works fine, including Govt, when “Markets” are local, responsive to a local population, and a known face/family is on the product. But this is Corporatism. This is not Capitlism.

    From the book description: When Corporations Rule the World:
    What happens when corporations rule the world?
    When Corporations Rule the World explains how economic globalization has concentrated the power to govern in global corporations and financial markets and detached them from accountability to the control the human interest.

    And what happens when corporations control housing markets?
    They dictate the overall rental rates
    They reduce competition
    Set the agreement standards and rent baseline
    Independents latch on and act the same way (because they can…it seems normal)

    detached from accountability and the control of human interest.

    When every product exists to make profit, sometimes immoral profits for hidden owners, it’s probably too late to complain. Or as they say, “You get what you pay for”. But hey, when is a profit immoral? Is it simply, ‘ charge what the market will bear’? Or something more organised?

    The only solution I see is for non vested interests to get into the housing markets for the ‘human interest’. Habitat does this on a very small scale, but imagine if the Bezos of the World actually paid taxes and said taxes were used to construct affordable housing to serve as an alternative to……..

    Can’t have that. We’ll sell them converted shipping containers, they can go to work from them.

    • Paulo says:

      Oh yeah…..not around to respond to any comments. Even angry comments. Daylight here and I’m going fishing. Won’t be on the computer for hours….hopefully.

      regards

      • Nacho Libre says:

        “The only solution I see is for non vested interests to get into the housing markets for the ‘human interest’.”

        And how exactly is that going to happen? Government interferes with all aspects of home ownership. It finances and guarantees mortgages at ridiculously low rates and high leverage ratios. It gives tax deductions for interest payments. It gives tax exemptions on the profit made from the sale. It makes sure you never truly own your house by demanding property taxes ad infinitum. It imposes rent controls, eviction moratoriums.

        Got ideas? No hurry, answer after you have caught some big fish.

    • VintageVNvet says:

      Good thing you mention the shipping containers P:
      Neighbor working with a company working with GUV MINT to provide low cost facility for vets utilizing containers.
      Plan is to make them one bedroom apts!
      Surely, 320SF at ”affordable” rates, ( likely around $1,000 here in the saintly part of TPA bay area) would be attractive anywhere???
      Last apt house we bid for in SoCal/HolyWood in fall of 17, the expected rents for the same size was $5,000 PER MONTH!!!
      At this point, very glad the ”better half” insisted we pay cash for our current humble abode.

      • Anthony A. says:

        Two office buildings made out of shipping containers went up in our town in the last couple of years. Quite attractive once the designer got the outside facade work done. And the offices are all rented out. Excellent use of materials.

      • Tony22 says:

        Vintage what does TPA stand for?

        Acronyms are a plague to understanding.

  13. drifterprof says:

    Average 22.1% rent hike in Las Vegas?

    Over the decades I have driven around and through the Western states quite a few times. When I drove through Las Vegas, it was usually hot as hell, with smoke wafting around as if one was making their way through Hades.

    Getting of the freeway, it seemed very boring and mundane. Probably one of the dumbest cities in America. Attracts people who have some weird compulsion to blow their money.

    • VintageVNvet says:

      Going to dis agree with you this time dp:
      Been in Vegas a dozen or so times the last decade or two,,, and I have been made welcomed by friendly and helpful folks each time, some very clearly going out of their way to help this old guy with mundane things, in the airport, car rental places, and the wonderful casino/hotels I have stayed at…
      Started actually driving a bit out of the way on the way to see kids, grandkids and long long time friends in OR and CA to go through LV just to enjoy the friendly service.
      Have not stayed on ”the strip” at all, and the places I have stayed were much less than the bland motels there and even in CA,,,
      So I, at least ”tried” to make it up with the wonderful gourmet meals, etc., etc., offered by those places, equal to the best in CA IMO,,
      (BTW, would mention names, but respect Wolf’s commenting rules, at least in that regard,,, ) No, really,,, wonderful site in spite of my comments some times being deleted.

  14. JMG says:

    Invitation Homes, owned by Blackstone, a giant asset management firm in their own right, who were the genesis of a little known firm called BlackRock.

    The reality is that these massive firms are slowly but steadily buying up property with the long term goal of owning everything and acting as landlords to the rest of us.

    • JMG says:

      “You will own nothing and you will be happy”.

      • RedRaider says:

        Let’s remember John D. Rockefeller’s famous dictum “My goal in life is to own nothing but control everything”.

        Puts “You will own nothing and you will be happy” in a different light. Control is the key not ownership.

        • JMG says:

          Interesting. I think asking asking who controls these institutions is a perfectly valid question.

          Who controls the banks?
          Who controls the government?
          Who controls academia?
          Who controls the media?

          Unfortunately, these are questions, in the so-called land of the free, that you are not allowed to ask. Noticing is verboten. Pattern recognition is frowned upon. Identifying things like group overrepresentation is simply not allowed. We are all just individuals after all, right? Isn’t that what we are taught?

          But people ARE beginning to notice. Slowly but surely.

          And not for the first time in history, they’re beginning to notice WHO these people are.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          “…beginning to notice WHO these people are.”

          “these people” = the super-wealthy?

    • drifterprof says:

      The massive firms would have to eliminate competition from foreign purchasers of residential property – especially the Chinese and other buyers from Asia/Oceana.

      • The Real Tony says:

        The Chinese will always outbid anyone non-Chinese so Blackrock will in essence become the seller of all their properties to the Chinese in the future. Put another way the only buyers will be the Chinese as they freeze out everyone else.

      • JMG says:

        It obviously should go without saying that in any properly functioning nation, foreigners buying up your real estate should be banned completely. Look at Thailand for example. Non-Thai residents are completely banned from owning land and housing. A simple and sensible policy that unapologetically privileges the natives.

        • VintageVNvet says:

          Totally,,, ”LIKE TOTALLY DUDE” (or dudette ) AGREE..
          Very Werry stupid IMHO for USA to let anyone not a citizen/voter/ maybe even ”native” ,,,
          buy RE anywhere at any price
          IIRC,,, no, NO other nation in the world does that???
          ( Maybe some on here can testify as to current sit rep,,,
          I have not tried for many years… )

        • Augustus Frost says:

          I think it’s ok for foreigners to own residential real estate in the US, but not without restriction. No foreigner has a “right” to either own property or live in another country, unless they are a citizen or legal resident.

          Most of the affordability problem could be resolved if the Federal Reserve wasn’t intentionally blowing an asset bubble. Same for foreign central banks where their own bubbles (such as in China) incentivize and make it affordable for their citizens to outbid Americans.

          US government policy also intentionally inflates the price of housing. Housing would be much cheaper without loan guarantees (FNMA, GNMA), bank deposit insurance, tax subsidies, flood insurance, restrictive local zoning…..

    • Beardawg says:

      JMG

      And why not ? Govt pacifies renters with no evictions and realizes that wasn’t smart cuz renters tend to blow their $$ on toys and (fill in the blank)

      Sooo….Govt decides to guarantee rents like a giant Section 8 expansion program. This pacifies landlords.

      Everyone is happy and politicians get re–elected by the rentier AND S-Corp-ion class.

      Yeah, when that is the landscape imposed on the populace, I sure as hell wanna be the one owning the asset which can’t lose. Next step is prolly guaranteed rehab costs when renters bail.

    • Wolf Richter says:

      JMG,

      Time to update your knowledge. Invitation Homes is a publicly traded REIT. You can buy the shares and own them and become a giant landlord. Blackstone spun it off via an IPO in 2017 and sold its remaining shares in 2019. Blackstone has been totally out of it for nearly two years.

      • JMG says:

        Don’t you think that’s splitting hairs a bit, Wolf?

        Fine, it used to be Blackstone, funded and grown and nurtured by them with all of the massive institutional leverage that only a firm like that could offer. So what if it was spun off and now the public can now “invest”. Big deal. It’s still a product of, and ultimately run by, the same class of people who don’t give a damn about the fact they are driving ordinary people out of the market. Who’s on the board? Who are the big shareholders?

        The fact that it is now publicly traded is irrelevant to the larger point I was making, namely, that these mega corporations are engaging in activities that should not be tolerated in a properly functioning society that doesn’t have an ideology that revolves entirely around “the economy”.

        Is it morally right for a firm like that to own 80,000 homes? Is that something that should be tolerated in society? How does that benefit me? Or you? Or 99.99% of American citizens?

        I just can’t see the benefit. I can sure as hell see the negative impacts of it though.

        • georgist says:

          it’s driven by rentiers. The location value is the primary determinant of rental / house value, and that is not created by the landlord. It’s created by society. Therefore society should recoup the unimproved value of the land.

          Singapore does this.

          The USA is built on the UK rentier system. But originally you didn’t have enclosure, as not all land was owned. This allowed for expansion westward. When an employer said “hey come and work on my farm for subsistence wages”, the employee said “no I will go and get my own farm”.

          But post enclosure there is no such choice.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          I agree with your issue of mega-corporations as landlords. Just needed to set the record straight about Blackstone.

        • Old School says:

          Another way to look at it is someone is willing to take risk of investing in new housing stock. Without savings and investment you are bush crafting what nature provides to put a roof over your head. All the players that provide labor and materials have to get paid.

        • Lawefa says:

          Everything about this situation is a disgrace and is far past regulation. 80K homes for rentals? Geez.

  15. JMG says:

    I can’t think of a much better example of a completely captured economy than some mega corporation owning that much residential property. It should be completely illegal in the first place for a corporation to even own 80,000 homes. In a nation that actually represented the best interests of its people, and not an elite financial class of rootless cosmopolitans, no single entity or individual would be permitted from owning more than a handful of properties.

    • Swamp Creature says:

      Foreigners and Corporations should not be allowed to buy or own single family homes period. Especially since the government is so involved in the whole RE industry from top to bottom. END OF STORY!

    • Old School says:

      I am ok with corporations providing new housing stock. Evidently we need it. What is the difference between a corporation funding new housing construction and Clayton Homes providing mobile homes?

  16. Beardawg says:

    JMG

    You state…

    “….It should be completely illegal in the first place for a corporation to even own 80,000 homes…”

    As per my prior comment, govt meddling in private real estate management is why we are here. How many times does govt need to meddle until we magically find landlord / renters Nirvana ?

    • cb says:

      It’s a lot more than Government meddling in the “private” real estate market. It’s Government meddling in the financial markets, with money being funneled toward Private Equity (Blackstone and others) via behavior control through tax deferment for 401k’s and pension plans. Of course the ultimate is FED meddling, creating money from nothing and loaning to insiders at low interest rates.

      The bane of Capitalism is concentrated wealth and power. The bane of any free people and free markets is concentrated wealth and power. you combine Corporatism (limited liability and money concentration), with a FED that gets to allocate money and credit and pick winners and losers, you get what we are getting. A financialized nation heading toward a tiered system with a good supply of debt and wage slaves. Exactly what the Masters want.

    • JMG says:

      No, this is libertarian fantasy nonsense. Lack of gov regulation (among other things) has led us here. That, combined with regulations that favor the big boys, like being able to borrow at favorable rates vs the average man on the street, privatize all your gains and then socialise your losses because you’re too big to fail.

      But the answer isn’t to get the gov out of “meddling” in things, it’s to have a gov that actually prioritizes its citizenry and punishes the parasite class that has the legal and financial muscle to rig the game in their own favor.

      • Beardawg says:

        JMG

        I think you, me and cb are on the same page. No question the Govt has created the Corp winners / losers moreso than ever since 2010 or so. It has permeated every market and now it’s into real estate.

        If I am Invitation or Pulte, I just play the hand dealt to me. The deck is stacked (agreed), but idiots have been dealing the cards. What incentive do I have to replace the idiots when they are the same ones who “could” outlaw my overlord status? Same as an underwater homeowner doing jingle mail. Stupid banks gave me the money….fools.

    • Petunia says:

      The biggest problem with this company owning 80K homes is the concentration of these homes in a small number of counties, cities, and towns. This concentration gives them enormous political and economic control in these political jurisdictions. They control HOAs, politicians, and police departments due to their real estate tax base and outsized political contributions. This concentration disenfranchises the normal homeowner and taxpayer base of these communities. I saw it in the last place I lived in FL.

      • VintageVNvet says:

        Thank u once again for your clear and concise comments on Wolf’s wonder site P.
        Couldn’t agree more with your summary of the results of the ”concentration meme” with these folks/corps quite literally taking control over local political entities.
        In spite of my nativist and localist orientation in my senescence, I keep trying to figure out how to insure my ”better half” will be able to at least ”proceed” in our humble lifestyle, etc.,
        long and longer after I am gone to where ever…
        Thanks again,

  17. AlamedaRenter says:

    We just signed a lease in alameda and will be moving this weekend. 2 bedroom, gated, one block from the beach, pool. With the extra $50/month for dog rent, we will be paying and even $2300 which is $175 less than we currently pay. But the kicker, the 1st and 6th month are free. Not amortized over the lease, straight free those two months.

    East Bay Area rents have dropped and a staying low.

    • drifterprof says:

      My parents once had their sailboat docked in Alameda for a while, and I hung out there a few times. At that time, circa 1980s, it seemed like a cool sort of low key place to live.

    • Nathan Dumbrowski says:

      Good on you. That is an amazing rate with bonus months to spoil yourself. Wishing you great things. There are success stories!!!

  18. SOL says:

    Incentive for investor ownership needs to be removed from the housing market. Housing is for people, not Corp profits.
    Raise the effing rates!

    • Ron Kallhoff says:

      Rates have nothing to do with it rental properties great investment all tax write offs almost guaranteed 10 percent profit and depreciation win win plus people pay when market crashes

    • MCH says:

      And seriously, when you have rising rates, who do you think can react to those faster. All of this request for intervention is idiotic, just like rental moratorium… the government took advantage and excuse of pandemic to try to fix a social problem and they are going to end up with a bigger mess on their hands.

      • Nicko2 says:

        All developed economies instituted rental moratoriums when the pandemic started. EU and countries like Canada are coming out of the pandemic healthy; such policies saved the global economy.

        • MCH says:

          You mean the same idiotic policy makers that also injected trillions into an already heated economy without considering the consequences?

          The wealth gap is real, but let’s face it, the root cause of that gap isn’t the greedy corporations, it’s the stupid policies that has been put in place and continued through decades of mismanagement by dumbos and jackasses.

          Greed and stupidity of corporations are enabled by these mismanagements.

  19. NoPrep says:

    I’m sure the leadership at Invitation run a clean business of highest integrity, having learned their lessons from the fall of Countrywide…right ??

    • Trailer Trash says:

      They are going to need plenty of high-priced muscle to keep squatters out of 80,000 properties.

  20. Mendocino Coast says:

    Do you think that ” Leal Brainard ” will fid this Transitory Like her work mate Powell then ?

    • Depth Charge says:

      Braindead will destroy what’s left of this country in short order. Hyperinflation is almost guaranteed if she gets the job.

  21. Cas127 says:

    At least build to rent increases supply, which in the long run brings prices under control.

    On the other hand…why not the older, cheaper build to rent…you know, apts?

    It is kinda weird that following a pandemic, huge unemployment, hundreds of thousands occupying graves not homes, astronomical private and public debts from gvt sponsored degeneracy…that the forecasted demand is for renting the 2500 SF McMansion (for McMorons) rather than a 1200 SF 3 bedroom apt.

    • Root Farmer says:

      Cas127,

      Here in Research Triangle Park, NC, new apartment buildings have been going up quickly. The current vogue is “luxury” apts. Low end appliances (-ve), high ceilings, often keypass accessed (+ve), poor workmanship (-), but all priced just a little below SFH rental. Sounds very similar to what you are suggesting. There are many new ones with more on the way.

      Over-priced, in my opinion. I say, Build, baby, build! I see no other way to create more affordable housing. The current distortions however, reduce my confidence that excess supply won’t get scooped by speculators. But as I keep hearing, what can’t keep going up, won’t.

      Thank you for your contributions here.

      • Cas127 says:

        Root Farmer,

        Thanks for info…I vaguely recall seeing years ago that NC was putting up a larger than typical number of apts compared to other states (over a number of yrs).

        I chalked it up to different states having a wide range of pro vs anti development attitudes, SFH vs. Apt regulatory biases, and maybe even NC’s abundance of nearby timber and people with carpentry skills.

        Some people mistake the influx of new high end apts as doing nothing for affordability, as the new housing stock is expensive.

        But any addition to supply helps affordability, as pre-existing units have to comparatively lower rent/slow increases in order to compete with the brand new pdt.

      • Tony22 says:

        Root Farmer, What does (-VE) mean?
        Yes, I googled it, no result.

        Acronyms kill the flow of thought.

        • Root Farmer says:

          Tony22,

          Sorry, it’s an engineering thing. (+ve) is positive, (-ve) is negative.

      • leanFIRE_Queen says:

        > Build, baby, build! I see no other way to create more affordable housing.

        Boomers dying will be a huge source of supply

        We shouldn’t allocate resources towards more longevity until housing is solved imho. Otherwise, all it does is increase homelessness, it doesn’t increase longevity, it redistributes it towards those who had it easy.

        • Juanfo says:

          A person born in 1950 still has another 2 decades of life left. Fortunate employed others slaving away at meaningless jobs squat in an abandoned warehouse with a colony of marsupials running across the ceiling all night. The story of the average working class person that could afford an average working class home still echoes around campfires. Now that same home would be more attainable on the surface of the sun. The past glows in memories. Injustice is a constant of the human condition. Even my deadbeat uncle who dropped out and never rose beyond the counter at the hardware store owned his clapped out janky a** old beater and leaky tarp shack bought and paid for.

  22. Depth Charge says:

    I wish there was an ETF for “Nomadland” behavior. I’d be all in.

  23. cb says:

    The mandate to build affordable housing is one of the stupidest mandates ever. Just quit subsidizing vested interests and get out of the way of the building process to allow the building of as much housing as viable, and the affordability part will take care of itself.

    There is too much government, corporate and vested financial interest impeding free markets. Too much concentrated wealth and power.

    • Cas127 says:

      “will take care of itself.

      There is too much government”

      The G/politicians are in the “sale of indulgences” business…you can’t broker zoning exemptions/tax breaks/etc unless you restrict supply/apply taxes/etc first…

      And the G wants to be in the center of every “solution” (to gather votes) even/especially if it is the author of the disaster initially.

      For instance…after multiple years of various political show trials in DC…where are the TV spectaculars asking why the F the G was funding Chinese scientists (period) and how exactly the CDC could so miserably fail in its one job (although I’m sure its Diversity and Inclusion department is…spectacular).

      But to expose years of bureaucratic theft/rot at the Fed Agencies would be to imperil next year’s budget increase (although in DC there is no failure that the increased incineration of the public fisc won’t fix…in the lobotomized, onanistic “mind” of the Bad Place)

      • cb says:

        @ Cas127 –

        Very clever. Worthy of “Unamused.” Wish he would come back. The interactions between unamused, yourself, historicus and a few others added clarity to a lot of issues.

    • Augustus Frost says:

      There would be (noticeably) more affordable housing at the lower end of the income scale if immigration law were actually enforced. Somehow, I have the sneaking suspicion that some or many of the commenters here castigating landlords aren’t in favor of that. Yes, I know this in and of itself doesn’t guarantee affordable housing. I’m also not posting as an advocate of corporate landlords. If interest rates were actually more “normal”, we might find that much of the problem would solve itself.

      • cb says:

        Rentiers love immigration. The more the better. Anything that increases demand and competition for what a rentier wishes to rent.

  24. DR DOOM says:

    Rent Seekers is an economic term. A college professor is a Rent Seeker as is a government bureaucrat. In short Rent Seekers are at best parasitic as they seek wealth without contributing to production. When The Rent Seekers are armed with Fiat from Central Banks at 0% interest rate the substance of an economy will be eaten. The counter balance to this is the “Natural Interest Rate” that connects production and wealth. This rate is 3%. If Ricardo and other old dead economist are correct the result will be ugly. This is an old true story. Nothing has been discovered.

    • cb says:

      DR DOOM said – ” Rent Seekers are at best parasitic as they seek wealth without contributing to production.”
      __________________________________

      How does this apply to passive investors? Say in stocks or REITs(Real Estate Investment Trusts)?

      • DR DOOM says:

        Broadly speaking There are only producers and consumers in an economy period. Rent Seeking is neither good nor bad. It is a simple classification to try to model an economy as to what side of the equillibum an activity falls. Parasitic behavior arises from the denial of ” The Natural Interest Rate” which is the time value of money . Only the sovereign has the power to deny.The Fed’s mission is to keep the parasitic balls of debt in the air. The equillibrium between consumer, investment and producer has always been an opportunity to extract wealth without production. This is called government and it has worked great for them. This process of wealth extraction is carried out by a devious and manipulative cadre of people we call the politician.

    • OutsideTheBox says:

      Ricardo would depict stockholders as Rent Seekers.

      • georgist says:

        I think this is mainly applicable in the current system, where labour is prevented from wage negotiations by outsourcing and immigration, plus the lack of a safety net.

        The current system makes speculators rentiers. It also makes landlords rentiers. If landlords were taxed on the unimproved value of land then they would only gain the value they add, making them non-rentiers.

        So it’s about the context rather than just a label to apply to a specific area of the economy.

        • Beardawg says:

          georgist

          Brilliant take.

        • VintageVNvet says:

          Don’t dis agree g,,, but try to compare that with the majority of the last few thousand years, where the vast majority of our species was ”owned” by the king, or whomever after the Magna Carta allowed all the other barons and counts and so on and so forth to own WE the PEONS.
          ( Thanks to Unamused for the WE The PEONS!! )

          [[ Have had serious and long long, 50 + years discussions/debates/arguments with friends and family for many decades re: better now?? ]]

          Some postulated availability of great music ”then” confined to the rich, now available to almost any one or 2.
          Certainly, other metrics apply: ”democracy” or at least attempts there to the last few centuries in USA and EU;
          Availability of ”medical services” per the allopathic model, especially clearly GREAT for acute trauma, etc., as proven in many wars in the last century or so
          Possibly not so clear for ”dis ease” these days and formerly, per my best mentor, a MD and PhDx2 who was drafted into the USA Medical Corps the day he finished med school, and sent directly to a MASH right close to the lines in EU in 1943…
          IMHO, many other metrics exist that show that WE the PEONS are much better off these days with regards the overall average for the last few thousand years.
          Do we need to keep the curve positive,,, ABSOLUTELY!!
          And WE the Peons can at least hope, and do our best to contribute, to keeping the Second Derivative of the curve positive as well, eh”

        • georgist says:

          > but try to compare that with the majority of the last few thousand years

          no thanks, I’m not accepting the “what about the stone age” line now or ever.

          Perhaps as an American you are willing to die in a ditch without a whimper, I’m not.

        • Augustus Frost says:

          “plus the lack of a safety net.”

          There is a safety net. It may not meet your standards but that is a different consideration entirely. Personally, I am implacably opposed to any open ended unlimited entitlements, whether for the rich or the poor.

          The most extreme example is what we have with monetary policy and the FRB “Put” benefitting the most affluent the most. More generally, the rent moratoriums, mortgage forbearance, and additional unemployment where the government has no clue whether the recipients are in need and doesn’t care either.

        • cb says:

          @ Beardog –

          Henry George – a fascinating economist. If you haven’t read him, I recommend that you do.

    • Whitey (the other one) says:

      From “Investopedia”

      “Economic rent is the income earned from the utilization of resource ownership. Entities that own resources can lend them to earn interest rents, lease them to earn rental income, or they may utilize their resources in other income-producing ways. ”

      In what way is a college professor a”rent seeker”? The term is already well defined, you don’t get to invent your own definition and tout it as fact. A person who works for a wage/salary is not seeking economic rent.

  25. cb says:

    Get rid of VA, FHA, depreciation, interest deductibility, limited liability for corporations and private equity groups that concentrate purchasing power to financialize the economy, etc.

    • Micheal Engel says:

      1) There are 40M homes free of mortgages and 150M homes with mortgages, for a total of 190M homes.
      2) King INVH own : 80K/ 190,000K = 0.04% of the market.
      3) If INVH is the biggest fish, it’s a mom & pops market.
      4) INVH should sell big portion of the cream to mom&pops, the rest
      at retail & wholesale prices.
      5) INVH have a target on their back.

    • Swamp Creature says:

      The VA was one of the last bastians of honest lending especially for 1st time homebuyers and now that has been corrupted. . Most of the houses are now owned my absentee landlords and speculators.

      • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

        Where is the evidence of this claim you make weekly? Please share.

  26. Swamp Creature says:

    It doesn’t matter who’s in charge of our government any longer. We are so far gone that a gigantic reset cannot be avoided. You don’t have to go back to the Roman Empire. Go back 100 years. We are like the Austria/Hungarian Empire in 1912/1913/1914. Every institution in our country is corrupt and rotting from the inside out. Read Jeffrey Wawrow’s excellent book “The Mad Catastrophe”, a detailed accounting of what happen there taken from accurate sourcing from his ancestors and historical records. Everything that happened there is happening here in the USA.

    • El Katz says:

      ^ This.

      Red Team / Blue Team is kabuki theater.

    • Cas127 says:

      Thanks for the book recommendation…I’ll check it out.

      Considering the massive impact that inflations/devaluations have had on some societies there doesn’t seem to be a huge literature on them (there is a fair amount on inflations/hyperinflations but surprisingly less on devaluations…perhaps because the US has never before been so dependent upon imports…the US could ignore FX volatility because intl trade (read imports) was a small part of GDP.

  27. Seems obvious that while government is assuming responsibility for the flow of consumer income that private enterprise will step in front of them. Inflation would happen, always figured that when the gov buys dinner, the vendors raise prices, and the consumers paying cash pony up the difference, but that never really happened. The incentive to be a landlord in the era of rent controls is what exactly? The excess supply comes to market and your bottom line takes a hit. Then gov has to bail you out. The only people who seem to be heading in the right direction are the digital currency makers, they know the money is no good. But so far I don’t see them providing much service.

  28. georgist says:

    Lesson one: all gains flow to land.

    Or as Churchill put it: land is the mother of all monopolies.

    Or as Friedman put it: land value tax is the least bad tax.

    Americans can either realize that rentiers get all productivity gains, or sink. Please just hurry up about it though, the thrashing is pathetic to watch.

    As is evident on this thread, landlords lay claim to the wages of workers and assert that they are entitled. They can only get this huge unearned profit because the main value of their property, the location value, is not taxed correctly.

    Land value tax has no dead weight.

    Why isn’t rentier activity ever called out on any American blog? You guys have a very unsophisticated view of the “free market”. Essentially you just naively regurgitate “free market” whenever money changes hands, with no real thought to what backs up the ownership or value of your land.

    • Nicko2 says:

      It’s because America is now an oligarchy with a few at the top, a vast underclass, and an eviscerated and ever shrinking middle class.

      Contrast; in America, the top 1% now own nearly 40% of the nation’s wealth. In Canada the top 1% own 26% of the nation’s wealth – wealth distribution for the win!

      The wealth distribution in the United States has more in common with an emerging economy like Mexico or Brazil.

      • georgist says:

        Monopolies are rentier activity.

        If you had a very rich person who got there by curing cancer then we all win. They created value.

        The current crop of oligarchs are mostly laying claim to IP, land or under-regulated monopolies, where they can name their monopoly price. That makes them a rentier.

    • cb says:

      @ geaorgist : “Why isn’t rentier activity ever called out on any American blog? You guys have a very unsophisticated view of the “free market”.
      ________________________________________

      oh but it has, many times. You rarely hear of Economist Henry George, or his outlook, on many financial blogs. But he has a few followers, and some who intuitively understands a core of his outlook. Some are shy though, because of the tendency of the rentier class, and dupes thereof, to scream SOCIALIST!

      • georgist says:

        Americans scream socialist because the general level of education is very, very low.

  29. otishertz says:

    In other news, 80 people were forcibly decamped in Laurelhurst Park yesterday.

  30. Micheal Engel says:

    1) MSFT = $2.1T. INVH = $23.2B, or 1% of MSFT. INVH is MSFT annual dividend, almost. The FANG have a lot of influence, but higher rent is more painful. Without gov carpet they affect millions of people.
    2) Rent always peak on the cusp of recessions.
    3) INVH should take profit at the top. Perhaps that’s what they are doing.
    4) Recessions throw people to the streets, increase vacancies, rectify rent, reduce labor cost, flatten taxes, kill the banks…Vacancies are landlords curse.
    5) Bubbles are like a pencil standing on it’s edge, they are extremely
    unstable. They fall, without support.
    6) Both sides need support : landlords need tenants and tenants need landlords. There might be a compromise. A way out will benefit both.

    • georgist says:

      Landlords have had 20 years of uninterrupted gains. Due to explicit support for 20 years. 20 years is pretty stable, no? In 2008 we had a recession, the central banks all propped up housing and inflated it yet again. Same with covid.

      We need to do what Keynes and Friedman and Hayek all wanted:

      > “euthenize the rentier”

      The search for a middle ground for economic cancer is not going to result in a win.

      The elevation of the rentier above the wealth creator is a *political* choice. It’s used to bribe boomers to vote to impoverish their own kids.

      This has to end. It can end. The boomer generation has been a total disaster. Living standards have gone _down_. The sooner this ends the better.

      • jon says:

        what is needed is hike in rates which are artificially forced low by the FED for the last few decades to the advantage of asset holders.

      • Memento mori says:

        “euthenize the rentier”?
        that was what Marx wanted to do.
        We know how it turned out is soviet russia.
        You need to let free market work, that is all.
        Every time some government genius wants to make things affordable by subsidizing them, the effect is immediately nullified by the corresponding increase in price of the asset being subsidized.
        Why is Fed buying MBS?
        Why is government sponsoring mortgages through Fannie & Mae ?
        Why is interest on mortgage tax deductible, why there are 1030 and other loopholes for real estate?

        • georgist says:

          It’s a quote for Keynes. Read up.

          Stop saying everything is communism, it looks weak.

      • MarkinSF says:

        “The Boomer generation has been a total disaster”

        “In 2008 we had a recession, the central banks all propped up housing and inflated it yet again.”

        Not sure if you grasp the contradiction in your rant but I believe it was Obama, swept into office by a wave of 1st time millenial & Gen X voters after promising a more equitable economy and govt. who oversaw this catastrophic move. Obama is definitely not a “boomer” and 2008-2009 was the once in a lifetime opportunity to right the ship and let the rigged game rot.
        Instead he hitched his wagon to Wall Street and the corporate titans. Bailed out failed companies (mostly of the parasitic FIRE variety), prosecuted not a single player that was heavily involved in creating the mess (through a system greased by all manner of illegal, unethical & immoral activity), allowed large quantities of housing stock to be sold to corporate investors for pennies on the dollar.
        I could go on but need you to explain how this can possibly be attributed to boomers?
        The fact is that millenial and Gen X voters were conned. This is a big money game and putting the blame on a generation is just foolish. The is about class and as long as the super wealthy can keep the argument amongst the plebes their hold on everything just intensifies.
        Would love to read a logical breakdown of your premise

        • nodecentrepublicansleft says:

          You think the GOP, the party of corporate boot lickers that met the day after the election and decided to block anything he tried to do (to make him a “one term president”) was going to be on-board w/jailing the people behind the collapse. Never a chance in hell that was going to happen!!

  31. Shiloh1 says:

    A corporate landlord like Invitation has infinitely more ways to legally manipulate their financials and income tax compared to a Ma &Pa on tax form Schedule E.

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Corporate landlords have huge advantages. They can issue rent-backed securities that investors gobble up, which provides a very cheap source of funding and may shift some risks to those investors (depending on how they’re structured). They can issue unsecured bonds at super-low rates. They can do a follow-on offering and raise billions of dollars in equity in no time. They can do all kinds of BIG stuff that mom-and-pop operators can never do.

  32. Memento mori says:

    I have been saying this for some time, rents are exploding and you cant find much product out there, probably moratorium created a huge shortage.
    We had more than 80 applicants for a unit that became available within a week. Its nuts in SoCal right now.
    I expect bidding wars on rentals in the same way as with houses.
    The Fed is destroying the social fabric of this country by trying to fool people that there is no inflation or it is transitory.
    What are they trying to achieve here ?

  33. MFG says:

    The Invitation Homes CEO got started during the 2008 subprime crisis buying up foreclosed homes in Arizona. Back in 2010, a Bush admin concession to use funds set aside to help distressed homeowners was rejected…. Barney Frank spilled the beans in an interview. The IH CEO also helped fund an anti rent control proposition in CA. IH has evicted over 900 renters despite getting pandemic relief funding.

  34. NotDeadYet says:

    Those corporate landlords do have huge advantages, Wolf.
    I recently met a middle class woman who managed to amass an impressive number of rental properties.
    She chose not to get involved with Section 8 housing (State sponsored for low income rental).
    When the pandemic hit and the eviction moratorium was enacted in my state, most of her tenants stopped paying rent. Of course this woman continued to be liable for the mortgage payments, insurance and property tax costs on those rental properties.
    She was in the process of building a new home for herself and her family, which she was forced to abandon. She could no longer afford private school for her two children and had to put them in the public school system. This is what caused her the greatest distress.
    As the daughter of immigrants, she is positive and hopeful for the future, but she feels something is wrong with the system.
    I assume corporate landlords will be buying her foreclosed properties sometime in the future. They have the ability to acquire such properties (sometimes in block purchases) and the strength to weather such things as eviction moratoriums.
    But I do have a feeling if Corporate Landlords are holding most the residential rental properties someday, government programs like eviction moratoriums and rent holidays will not be enacted without adequate compensation for the landlord.

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