Renting Is the New Buying, Thanks to Plague of Foreclosures

Homeownership is being replaced by a new American virtue: renting. Landlords across the country are reporting a big increase in new leases as foreclosures push former owners into the rental market, and young adults are finding new jobs and setting out on their own. For the first half of 2010, occupied apartments rose by 215,000 in the 64 biggest rental markets. The surge is expected to translate into 5 percent to 10 percent earnings increases in real estate investment trusts, a popular investment vehicle. So be proud, be transient -- be a renter.