With all the turmoil and unknown in the markets, investors today may be searching for a safe-haven. U.S. real estate wouldn't exactly sit at the top of the list for most, given the still uncertain state of the housing and credit markets, but there is one sector that seems to have fundamentals and sentiment on its side: Apartments.
We're in Boston, MA today for day two of the Spring Realty Check: Opportunity Knocks. Boston is home to Avalon Bay, one of the largest apartment REITs in the nation. It's revenues were up 8 percent year over and shares are up 34 percent from a year ago. It's the upside to the downturn in housing. Many people who lost their homes to foreclosure have been forced to the rental market, others who are unable to get a mortgage are doing the same, and still others who would have headed toward home ownership have been scared away from the market by still falling prices. In turn, apartment vacancies are down, rents are up and REITs are reaping the rewards.