Here is an interesting article. A large builder like Lenar considering the rental market. Investors large and small have taken advantage of the market and low priced home to rent and now that the market is turning arround may also have large appreciation. Some builders who got built units for sale converted to rentals to show cash flow to the lenders to complete the projects. Some builders have built new rental communities to take advantage of the large demand for rentals. Usuually since they are new the rental prices are at the higher end of the market.
What is unusual is a large traditional For Sale builder considering building for rent. It will be interesting to follow this and see if it is a good business decision. I think it will be. Tenants are different than traditional sales however, properly managed rentals can be lucrative. It may allow some projects that have been on the sidelines for a while start the building process. Rentals can be converted to For sale as their leases expire. Many investors have used a similar strategy while they wer waiting foir the market to turn arround.
What is interesting is the builder does not see credit to First Time Home Buyers loosening up in the near future