From 2006 to 2014, the nation's single-family rental inventory swelled, especially in communities hit hardest by the foreclosure crisis. Single-family rental growth has since slowed down, and experts wonder for how long.
Single-family rentals grew 32 percent from 2006 to 2016, and now accounts for 34 percent of U.S. rental inventory overall, per Census data. Most of the new rental units that came onto the market were not new construction, however, as 3.5 million were previously owner-occupied homes. Only 366,000 of the new units were built. According to Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies, converting single-family homes into rentals was not uniform across the country, rather, the greatest shares of the conversions were in states with higher foreclosure rates.
A decade of growth in the single-family rental market has fundamentally reshaped the nature of rental housing across the country, with states hard-hit by the foreclosure crisis seeing particularly notable changes, according to Joint Center analyses of data from the American Community Survey (ACS) and other sources. Our review also showed that the stock of single-family rental homes, which grew dramatically between 2006 and 2014, has been roughly stable for the last few years.