Institutional-investor money flowing into the single-family rental market has been a recurring theme in these pages over the past couple months. Perhaps it's no coincidence that we've run across more articles on this topic.

In recent weeks, we've noted that Blackstone has spent $4.5 billion buying 26,000 single-family homes, and that American Homes 4 Rent recently bought 10,000 single-family homes to rent. What's more, American Homes plans to go public, having filed a $1.25 billion initial public offering (IPO). (It's worth noting that Colony American Homes, a REIT managed by Colony Capital focused on leasing single-family homes, postponed an IPO, citing poor market conditions.)

Single-family home rentals have traditionally been the domain of small partnerships and individual investors. Today, billionaires, hedge funds, REITs, and private equity have gotten into the act. This has raised a few concerns, especially in markets like Phoenix that have snapped back hard from the depths of the 2009-2010 sell-off. Institutional-investor money has helped re-inflate home prices in many markets.

The point we want to emphasize is that market composition matters, and that we should always be aware of who and what composes our particular market.

 Courtesy of Jessica Regan.

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