The "big guys" are of interest too:
... lower share values [in REITs; Real Estate Investment Trusts] reflect several concerns on the part of investors, analysts say. The concerns are that more renters will become buyers as the single-family housing market improves, that the rental market is facing a glut of new supply, and that rents have been pushed as high as they can go.
Analysts say, though, that these concerns have been exaggerated. Alexander Goldfarb, a managing director at Sandler O’Neill & Partners, said that net operating income — rent minus expenses — was still growing faster in the apartment sector [multifamily; 5+ units] than in other areas of commercial real estate, and that the growth rate is on pace to be 7 to 9 percent for 2012. He said the so-called move-out rate was slightly below the long-term average of 15 percent. (At the peak of the housing boom, about 30 percent of tenants gave up their rental apartments each year.)
Read the whole article: In Archstone Sale, Equity Residential and AvalonBay Divide Spoils - NYTimes.com