White House moves on racial inequities, urban exodus no urban myth, Chipotle ups the new employee ante, housing starts in slow-grow mode, why we should all rent.
Today on Millionacres
The White House’s Moves to Address Racial Inequities: Investor Impact
Our Liz Brumer runs down moves the Biden administration has made to take on the sticky, and long-lived, issue of racism in America, including its effects on housing.
The Millionacres takeaway: There are multiple ways for investors to get involved, from tax breaks to grant funding. Find the right wave and ride it. If the timing is right, it’s a great opportunity to do well while doing good.
Did the Pandemic Really Cause an Urban Exodus? Yes. But It’s Complicated
So, it turns out the pandemic and concurrent social unrest really did create a kind of exodus from America's high-cost, large metro areas, although it seems to be abating.
The Millionacres takeaway: A new report from the Cleveland Fed documents the macro trends and then slices and dices where it’s happening and how. "Don’t you think that’s some information I would’ve liked to know?" Now you do.
Either way, it's good to know for real estate investors who want to take a deep dive into where people are leaving and going.
This Restaurant Chain Is Raising Wages to Attract New Workers
Restaurants across the country have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic and subsequent labor shortage, and Chipotle (NYSE: CMG) is responding by raising its starting wage to $15 and throwing in a $200 bonus to try to add as many as 20,000 new employees right now.
The Millionacres takeaway: Our Maurie Backman points out that this is both a strategic and maybe a reputational move, since Chipotle has taken some heat for the mistreatment of workers. Each one of its stores is a piece of commercial real estate, so investors should be following these developments with some interest.
Also in Today’s News
Exorbitant Lumber, Scarce Materials Hampering U.S. Homebuilding
U.S. homebuilding rebounded less than expected in May as very expensive lumber and shortages of other materials continued to constrain builders’ ability to take advantage of an acute shortage of houses on the market, Reuters reports.
The Millionacres takeaway: Housing starts did actually rise year over year -- just not as fast as expected. This is still a strong housing market, and homes that do get built are, in most places, finding buyers willing to pay top dollar.
America Should Become a Nation of Renters
Houses are now more prone to be priced high relative to rents, as well as to see their prices fluctuate with the market, this Bloomberg Opinion writer says [subscription required], while the very features that made homebuying an affordable, stable investment are coming to an end.
The Millionacres takeaway: As a boomer, I remember the same bottom-line argument emerging a few times during times of fast-rising house prices. There are reasons -- especially around investment liquidity and affordability -- that could make things different this time, and the writer also makes a compelling case for rapidly expanding rental inventory.