Conglomerates are snapping up land

Junk mail is found in every mailbox across the nation. For most, it will make one last journey from mailbox to trash can. However, recently there is one piece that has been a frequent repeat. So, this time I opened it to find it was an offer to purchase our home, as-is, with an all-cash offer.

This junk mail did not make it into the trash can, but rather on a desktop in front of a computer. A brief search turned up more than I cared to know, and a very disturbing feeling. Companies are purchasing single-family homes and communities across the nation.

The family home is an investment and aids in building wealth. It also provides future financial security as the value appreciates. Generations have passed down this investment, created estate trusts, and taken loans on that investment. The family home provides financial options as well.

As Mark Twain famously said: “Buy land, they’re not making it anymore.”

North Florida has several companies owning single family homes and entire communities. Sustainability, green spaces, environmental and social governance score (ESG), and no mortgage worries are selling points to attract renters.

American Homes 4 Rent owns 14 communities in the area, and more than 130 single-family homes. Resihome owns more than 50 single-family homes. Tricon Residential owns more than 120 single-family homes. Invitation Homes owns more than 60 single-family homes. First Key Homes owns more than 240 single-family homes.

According to the National Rental Home Council in 2016, single-family home rentals comprised approximately 13 percent of occupied housing. Also, the 5 year outlook expected a 37 percent increase.

This trend, if it continues, will reduce the creation of generational wealth, and corporations will be the benefactor. Property ownership builds wealth. Future generations are depending on us to make wise decisions for the future today. To throw that “we want to buy your house” letter away or not, that is the question.

American investors are not the only one accumulating land in the U.S. News stories say interests from Red China have bought billions of dollars worth of farmland in America. Some of it is near military bases, which has aroused concern.

Foreign investors have bought more land in Florida than any other state. Gov. Ron DeSantis recently told Laura Ingraham of Fox News that he didn’t think business interest with alleged ties to the Chinese Communist Party should be allowed to buy up American real estate assets.

Not only is single-family home ownership in jeopardy, but also the nation’s food production. That “farmland” also can be converted into development. But what kind?

Debbie Gonzalez

Researcher and Writer Debbie a native of New York became a resident of Jacksonville via the U.S. Navy. After separating from the navy she worked for both Grumman Aerospace and later Northrup-Grumman Aerospace. After almost 20 years in the aviation industry, she went back to college to change professions. Going back to school as an adult that had lived all over the United States and abroad she had experience in culture and circumstance, which created an incongruity with the material being taught. At that point she began questioning the validity of the material and made the observation that to pass her courses she had to agree, at least on paper, with the material. She graduated about the same time as the Wall Street crash of 2008 and jobs were now difficult to find. So, with time on her hand she began to look into other areas to see if the incongruity existed outside of the college curriculum as well. This is where her mission for the truth began. Since then she has worked to get facts out to the public.


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