Invitation Homes, Blackstone’s single-family rental unit, is going public

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After purchasing tens of thousands of homes at post-recession prices, Blackstone Group LP — the biggest U.S. single-family home landlord — is taking Invitation Homes, its single-family rental unit, public.

Invitation Homes isn’t the first single-family rental landlord or real estate investment trust (REIT) to launch an initial public offering (IPO) — single-family rental companies American Homes 4 Rent, Colony Starwood Homes and Silver Bay Realty Trust are also publicly traded — but Blackstone is bringing close to 50,000 homes and $7.5 billion in valuation to its IPO.

Blackstone, based in Dallas, owns homes in 14 markets, which include Seattle, Los Angeles, South Florida and Atlanta.

On November 30, Invitation Homes filed confidentially for an IPO after several months of speculation that it would do just that in early 2017.

This could breathe new life into the real estate sector, which debuted as an official sector this year in September on the S&P 500 and has been the market’s worst performer since its launch, down 10 percent since its first day in September while the S&P 500 as a whole is up almost 2 percent.

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