Investors Are Buying More, Paying Less than Consumers


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Investors were busy in the second quarter of this year. They increased their share of purchased residential properties. But even though they bought more than consumers, they spent less. So where are these great deals? The RealtyTrac report has a few answers.

Hi, I'm Kathy Fettke and this is Real Estate News for Investors. If you like our podcast, please subscribe and leave us a review.

RealtyTrac published the results of its analysis with data from its parent company, ATTOM Data Solutions. (1) It found that investor purchases accounted for 15.4% of all U.S. residential purchases in the second quarter of this year. That’s up 3.9% from Q2 of last year when investors accounted for 11.5% of all home purchases. (2)

If you compare Q2 to Q1 of this year, investor purchases were about the same. Although the numbers show a year-over-year increase, RealtyTrac’s executive vice president, Rick Sharga, doesn’t believe they represent a significant change of course. But, he says they do disprove the idea that investors are gobbling up too much of the inventory. He says: “Historically investors have always accounted for somewhere between 10% and 15% of residential home purchases, and our data shows that this is still the case today, albeit at the high end of that range. But the data doesn’t support the ‘Wall Street is buying up Main Street’ theme that’s been a popular theory for the past year or so.”

States Attracting the Most Investors Activity

So where are investors placing their bets? New Hampshire tops the list, with Delaware, Georgia, Arizona, and Mississippi rounding out the top five. In the second tier is Florida, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Nevada. Investor share ranges from 23.2% of all purchases in New Hampshire to 18.7% of purchases in Nevada.

As for the ten states with the lowest share of investor purchases - Vermont tops that list, followed by Alaska, New Mexico, Montana, and Idaho. The other five states include Oregon, West Virginia, Wyoming, Washington, and Iowa. Investor share of purchases in Vermont are less than 1%, while Alaska is 1.9%. The share increases to about 11% for Iowa.

Biggest Investor Discounts

So what’s this about buying more and paying less? RealtyTrac says that in the second quarter, investors paid an average of 29.4% less than your typical consumer. That’s on a national basis among 38 states with full reporting data. Investors got a better deal, on average, in 33 out of 38 of those states. For investors, the median price of a home was $205,000. For consumers, it was $290.230.

As for the states with the biggest investor discounts, Arkansas was number one. It had the highest investor discount at 76.9%. Michigan was next with a 60% discount to investors. Louisiana and Nebraska were both about 55%. West Virginia and Oklahoma were around 50%.

Sharga is quick to point out that investors are not getting special treatment. They are just better shoppers. And, he says: “Another misconception is that investors are overpaying for properties, making it difficult for consumers to compete and artificially driving up prices. But successful investors tend to look for below-market pricing in order to make a profit…” Plus, many buy in cash, which often comes with a discount.

In Q2 of this year, 79% of investor purchases were in cash compared to 69% for Q2 of last year. While that figure varies from state-to-state, the report shows that the share was more than 50% in all states, except for Alaska.

There’s a link to the RealtyTrac report in the show notes at

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Thanks for listening. I'm Kathy Fettke.


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