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Home > Affordable Housing, Analysis and Commentary, Manufactured Homes, Manufactured Housing Industry, News, research, Trends > Amidst Controversy, CoreLogic’s Special Report on Investor Home Buying Trends

Amidst Controversy, CoreLogic’s Special Report on Investor Home Buying Trends

June 21st, 2019



What follows is a scenario that sheds light on affordable housing – and thus impacts manufactured home professionals and the home buying public – in several ways.


There may be absolutely no connection to the fact that CoreLogic, which received a letter related to an antitrust probe by the Department of Justice, per Inman and the Real Deal, has just published a new special report on investor home buying trends.


Posted on the CoreLogic blog on 6.20.2019 by the firm’s Deputy Chief Economist, Ralph McLaughlin, is a report styled a “deep dive into investor homebuying activity” – some 1250 words plus graphics – for the year 2018. DSNews and Newsmax are among the sources that have reported on this study.




McLaughlin says that “By the end of 2018, the investment rate in the U.S. housing market reached 11.3% – the highest rate since CoreLogic started tracking these data in 1999. The investment purchase rate in 2017 was the second highest on record at 11%, which was above the investor buying fury of 2012 – 2014 when purchase rates reached 10.3% – 10.9%.”



To begin to properly understand the manufactured home industry, one must grasp the larger housing market, macrotrends, and the elephants in the room.


Smaller investors are responsible for increasing investor homebuying activity. This is in sharp contrast to the rise in large institutional investors in the years following the recession,” per CoreLogic.These so-called “mom-and-pop” investors grew from 48% of all investor-purchased homes in 2013 to more than 60% in 2018. Large investors – those who purchased more than 101 homes – nearly doubled their activity between 2000 and 2013 but have pulled back since the foreclosure crisis and now sit at 15.8% of purchases. Medium-sized investors – those who purchased between 11 and 100 homes – have also seen their share steadily fall, from a peak of 30% in 2010 to 22.7% in 2018.”



While purported data from the Manufactured Housing Institute has at times been arguably  tilted to favor certain member firms, there is no known claims against CoreLogic for rigging their data findings.


We also found investor purchase rates were much higher among starter-homes. The share of starter homes purchased by investors peaked at over one-in-five homes over the past two years, with a rate of 20.3% in both 2017 and 2018,” wrote McLaughlin.




That factoid clearly has significance to manufactured home sellers, investors, and affordable housing professionals.  More to the point, given the law of supply and demand, it is part of the reason why ‘starter homes’ are harder to come by for first-time and other affordable housing seekers.

CoreLogic, in their report linked here, also noted that “While there are several plausible explanations, we found investors are attracted to markets where rents are relatively high compared to purchase prices.”

That point coincides with issues that MHLivingNews and MHProNews have previously reported – spotlighted in part by the viral Seattle is Dying video, found in the analysis and report linked from the text-image box below.


A bottom-line takeaway from CoreLogic’s research? “…it’s a truism that homebuyers today are more likely to cross paths with investors during an open house than at any other time in the past two decades.” There full report is found linked here.


Hurdles, Headaches, and Challenging Opportunities

These facts and trends reflect problems and hurdles for millions.  But it is also an opportunity in disguise for the industry and its professionals, if…



…but only if, the kinds of problematic behavior that has been previously outlined by MHProNews and our sister site, MHLivingNews, are avoided or managed.  Two examples are linked above and below.



In a series of direct quotes in context, a document from 21st Mortgage signed by Tim Williams, and video recorded comments by Kevin Clayton, these all line up to demonstrate how independent retailers, communities, and producers – among others – where purportedly harmed by action that could be deemed an antitrust violation. Why hasn’t Allen told his readers how that cost them money?


These facts and trends also reflect a need for public officials to act to enforce the law on enhanced preemption, the Duty to Serve manufactured housing, and other laws already on the books that could transition millions from renting into a life of greater opportunity and wealth-creation through home ownership.

See our most recent report, linked below the bylines and notices.


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