AS RENTERS MOVE IN, SOME HOMEOWNERS FRET
New York Times
By: Shaila Dewan / Photo by: LANCE MURPHEY FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES
Despite signs of a recovery in the housing market, the country’s homeownership rate is still on the decline. In Memphis, it has fallen from roughly 65 percent of families in 2005 to about 55 percent now, according to the Census Bureau.
In hundreds of neighborhoods that once attracted first-time home buyers, investors have stepped in, buying up tens of thousands of homes for the rental market.
That has helped put paying tenants in a number of homes that were vacant or becoming eyesores. And many of the new tenants say they are eager to buy a home at the first opportunity and share the same concerns as homeowners about maintaining a safe and healthy neighborhood for their families and children.
But it has also raised the ire of some homeowners whose tidy subdivisions have changed, seemingly overnight, into a parade of strangers.