More than three times as many potential homebuyers were interested in buying a home as an investment in March compared to the same month last year, according to a survey by operator Move Inc.

In general, consumers purchase an investment with the hope that it will appreciate over time and/or generate income in the future. For homes, that usually means that the buyers don’t live in the home and rent it out instead.

In March, 17.2 percent of consumers planned to purchase a home as an investment in the near future. One year ago, only 5.6 percent did.

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