Renter Nation

For RentWe talk every day about the philosophy and mindset of the American public and the shift over the past few years. Simply put, the United States has become a nation of renters. The short explanation is that they got burned by real estate and the desire to pursue the American dream of owning that perfect little home has all but disappeared. The longer explanation is still playing out as literally millions of Americans continue to move from home ownership to tenancy.

This is great news for real estate investors in Canada. House prices fall. Rental rates go up. It’s a win-win situation. If they’re going to rent, they might as well rent from us.

Validation and proof of this is everywhere.  Here’s what Barron’s had to say today:

“The American dream of owning a home has continued to fade over the past 14 months, a trend anticipated in a Barron’s cover story last year (“Renter Nation,” July 26, 2010). As we predicted, the shares of the four real-estate investment trusts, specializing in apartment rentals, that we flagged in the story have risen. Expect more of the same.”

You can read the entire article here.

Further evidence of this is everywhere as millions of Americans choose to move from home ownership to rentals.  That’s great news for those people who understand that these millions of people need to rent from someone and it might as well be us.

From Bloomberg today, another great article about the ‘surprising’ (their word not mine) lack of interest in buying a home.  The article includes this tidbit: “Consumer sentiment at depressed levels, unemployment above 9 percent and limited access to credit are preventing Americans from taking advantage of near record-low mortgage rates and discounted pricing on homes“.

Yep.  Perfect time to buy, hold and rent.

That’s what we’re doing.

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