Monday, September 14, 2009

More Accidental Landlords

by Calculated Risk on 9/14/2009 01:36:00 PM

From Shahien Nasiripour at the HuffPost: Unable To Sell Their Houses, Millions Of Homeowners Are Turning Into Landlordsmaybe

Since 2007 about 2.5 million homes have been converted into rentals, according to an analysis performed for The Huffington Post by Foresight Analytics, a real estate market research firm based in Oakland, Calif. The conversions account for about 85 percent of the increase in rental homes.
The numbers are probably higher. As I noted in The Surge in Rental Units
Since Q2 2004, there have been over 4.3 million units added to the rental inventory.
...
Where did these approximately 4.3 million rental units come from?

The Census Bureau's Housing Units Completed, by Intent and Design shows 1.1 million units completed as 'built for rent' since Q2 2004. This means that another 3.2 million or so rental units came mostly from conversions from ownership to rentals.

These could be investors buying REOs for cash flow, condo "reconversions", builders changing the intent of new construction (started as condos but became rentals), flippers becoming landlords, or homeowners renting their previous homes instead of selling.
Note: I've been writing (and joking) about accidental landlords for several years.

From Nasiripour on a prominent accidental landlord:
[A] growing number of homeowners ... have become landlords, often reluctantly, as they struggle to sell during one of the worst housing markets in recent memory. The most prominent example may be U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who after failing to sell his $1.6 million home in a New York City suburb found tenants instead.
I guess Geithner is holding on for a better market!