Blackstone Group LP is planning an initial public offering for its Invitation Homes single-family rental unit for the first half of next year, according to two anonymous sources. The exact size and timing of the IPO hasn’t been decided yet.
The planned IPO would come at a time when U.S. single-family rental landlords are seeing a rally in share prices as earnings improve and apartment renters fall from favor. Apartment companies are usually the single-family renters’ largest competitors for investors, but they have been the worst performers among REITs in 2016 so far.
“REIT investor interest in the single-family rental sector has grown recently, thanks largely to improved operating results, particularly as apartment fundamentals weaken,” said Dave Bragg, a managing director at Green Street Advisors.
Invitation Homes, which currently oversees 50,000 homes across the country, would go public as a real estate investment trust. Blackstone built Invitation Homes from depressed properties purchased in the aftermath of the housing crisis, and bet their success on renting those properties to Americans who had lost their homes to foreclosure or were unable to get mortgages.