Single-Family RentalNational Housing Market Outlook

The Boomerang Veers Off Course

March 4, 2014

Of the 5.3 million households who lost their home to a foreclosure or short sale from 2007 to 2013, we believe that:

  • 889,000 have already repurchased a home.
  • 1.6 million will be stuck renting for at least the next seven years.
  • 2.8 million will become homeowners again by 2021 (“boomerang” buyers).

Single-family rental landlords and homeowners will benefit from boomerang buyer demand. Riverside-San Bernardino will see the greatest activity, followed closely by Los Angeles and Phoenix.


The renter households created each year by foreclosures and short sales has declined over the past few years. Still, we expect a significant number of these households to rent for the foreseeable future. Single-family rentals should benefit the most from these renters. Note our estimate of the trend in renter households caused by the 2007–2013 distress:

Recent FHA Changes Will Hurt Homeownership

FHA loans are the most common loans for boomerang buyers, whose credit is not yet repaired. We expect the recently reduced FHA loan limits to impair the higher price points in a handful of markets. Those hoping to get a mortgage between the 2013 and new 2014 loan limits shown below will be disappointed.

The FHA loan limit changes will hurt the new home market more than the resale market because many new homes are priced right in the ranges eliminated by the new limits.

The Future

We have detailed metro data for boomerang buyers and other metrics relating to distress. These metrics, including shadow inventory and investor activity, significantly affect markets across the country. They will also impact home building and single-family rental businesses. For further information on boomerang buyers, rental households, and our metro-level analysis, please fill out this form. 

Building Market Intelligence™

Every week, we deliver analysis to over 40,000 subscribers with our Building Market Intelligence™ newsletter. Subscribe to our weekly BMI newsletters to stay current on pressing topics in the housing industry.

About The Author

Contact Us

If you have any questions about our services or if you would like to speak to one of our experts about we can help your business, please contact Client Relations at

Products and Services Mentioned

green check icon

Research Membership

Our research services enable our clients to gauge housing market conditions and better align their business and strategic investments in the housing industry. We provide a thoughtful and unique holistic approach of both quantitative and qualitative analysis to help clients make informed housing investment decisions.
green check icon

Single-Family Rental Package

A comprehensive overview of the single-family rental industry’s major markets including forecasts, SFR market rankings, macro drivers, housing supply, demographic trends, and a look at Build-to-Rent.
green check icon

Real Estate Consulting

Our experienced team of consultants helps clients make sound housing investment decisions. We thrive on their success and work with many clients over multiple years and numerous projects.

Latest Insights

Building Success: Doug Bauer and the Growth of Tri Pointe Homes
Dear Consultant: How will the declining birth rate impact the move-up housing segment?
Golden State Resilience: Four Considerations for California’s Housing Market