Single-family rental investors edging out mom-and-pop landlords in Kentucky

Mom-and-pop landlords could be pushed down-market or forced to sell

The March 2021 edition of the HousingIQ Survey of Kentucky REALTORS® posed two additional Market Pulse questions concerning single-family rental investor interest and mom-and-pop landlord confidence. Administered between March 30, 2021, and April 6, 2021, the 337 responses represent over 2.5% of the Kentucky REALTORS® membership.

Twice as many Kentucky REALTORS® anticipate an increase in SFR investor interest as report an increase in mom-and-pop landlord confidence

The January 2021 survey results had highlighted the toll that the eviction moratorium and uneven government assistance were taking on mom-and-pop landlords in Kentucky. Two months later, and nearly two in five REALTORS® report that mom-and-pop landlord confidence in the rental market has deteriorated.

70% of the Kentucky REALTORS® who report an improvement in mom-and-pop landlord confidence also anticipate an increase in SFR investor interest

As homebuyers get priced out of the market, the single-family rental market continues to expand and attract large-scale operations. This will further squeeze mom-and-pop landlords and either push them down-market or force them to sell.

Regionally, Western and Southern Kentucky have the strongest rental market

The problem must be addressed

To a large extent, mom-and-pop landlord distress is an unintended consequence of the eviction moratorium. The recent renter relief measures are a welcome first step. Mom-and-pop landlords are an important source of affordable rentals and often cater to marginalized renters. As the economy recovers from the pandemic and potentially enters a period of high growth, the loss of rental units managed by mom-and-pop landlords will likely further worsen the housing situation. It is in the public interest to support mom-and-pop landlords.

Methodology TL;DR

For this analysis, responses were weighted using local association membership counts to get accurate statewide counts. Local market counts were derived based on the primary market served by the respondent REALTOR®. The analysis assumes that REALTOR® responses reflect local market conditions rather than global knowledge.

Region Definitions
Western – Owensboro, KY, Evansville, IN-KY, Non-metro Western Kentucky
Southern – Bowling Green, KY, Clarksville, TN-KY, Non-metro Southern Kentucky
Northern – Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN
Eastern – Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH, Non-metro Eastern Kentucky
Central – Elizabethtown-Fort Knox, KY, Non-metro Central Kentucky
Louisville – Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN
Lexington – Lexington-Fayette, KY
Rural – Markets not included above

The rental market metric is a diffusion index of all responses for the specific region.