Balance shifts in rent vs. own debate

Some purchases based on 'consumption' reasons, not financial

An associate of mine who analyzes the real estate investment trust market for Barclays Capital recently held a press conference, which he titled, "U.S. Apartment Markets: Recovery Arrives."

According to his and others’ research, the multifamily housing market has finally turned the corner since the start of the economic downturn in 2007. Or, as my friend wrote, "Apartment demand has recovered more rapidly than most observers expected."

That’s surely a relief for the owners of apartment buildings, but, tangentially, it is also good news for potential homeowners because in the shifting metrics that contrast the value of homeownership versus renting an apartment, the forward balance is once again with owning a residence.