The five-second snapshot of where renters are choosing to live

With the rise of the smartphone, markets have always been watching the five-second snapshot. But along with smartphones came a new tool: the Instant Video app. Today it’s Google Maps. And last month, the…

The five-second snapshot of where renters are choosing to live

With the rise of the smartphone, markets have always been watching the five-second snapshot. But along with smartphones came a new tool: the Instant Video app. Today it’s Google Maps. And last month, the Metrasquare app. This chart gives a full-screen snapshot of where renters are choosing to live.

Since 2011, we’ve been looking for signs of a sustained decline in home ownership. Thanks to rental shortages, that appears to be happening, at least in some markets. But it’s not yet clear that renters are looking to buy more of their neighborhoods, or even in the suburbs. There doesn’t seem to be any trend toward us “returning to the suburbs,” as Weill Cornell & Citigroup economist Scott Krugman wrote in an August 8 post. (Also, among this report’s flaws: Growth in rentals and investor interest don’t automatically mean that the answer is “more people in them.”)

The one place where home ownership is going up — Denver.

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