Build-to-rent communities are flourishing in Houston, but at what cost?
For more than four decades, D.R. Horton has built homes for homeowners, but this past winter, it tried something new. In a pine-nestled neighborhood just north of The Woodlands, it built 124 houses not for homeowners, but for renters. It leased them up and put them on the market as a package deal for a different kind of buyer: an investor.
The winning bid, $31.8 million, was 79 percent more than the $17.8 million the community had cost to build, market and sell. For comparison, the average home the builder sold to a homeowner in that quarter went for only 34 percent more than costs. On an earnings call, analysts marveled over the trade.