FISHERS, Ind. — Suburban neighbors across central Indiana are concerned about large investors buying up nearby homes for rentals. May 12 at 8 p.m., the City of Fishers is hosting a virtual town hall discussion that leaders hope will equip homeowners associations with the tools needed to regulate investors’ purchases.

“The conversations that we’re going to have tonight is true for any suburban community and really every community,” Mayor Scott Fadness said. “So if people are interested in it, do not think that it’s a Fishers specific conversation. The tools that we’re going to be talking about are readily available and transferrable to your community as well.”

Those interested are able to sign up online or they can watch on the city’s Facebook page, facebook.com/fishers.indiana.

The situation regarding out-of-town investors purchasing houses to turn into rental homes is a topic discussed across the country. A main concern is this situation leaves fewer options for first-time homeowners.

“I think Wall Street coming in and buying all these homes is depriving a number of people from the opportunity to invest in a home, take care of that home, see it appreciate over time,” Fadness said.

Real estate experts tell us these large investors often have far more cash available than most people do, especially those looking to buy a house for the first time.

“Most people acquire the equity they need to buy future homes through the purchase of their first home, and they need financing to do that, are usually cash buyers, that’s very attractive,” Sara Coers, Associate Director for the IU Center for Real Estate Studies Investors, said. 

Real estate experts explain the homeowners association is an important resource when it comes to neighbors making decisions about investors’ purchases in their neighborhoods.

“Have covenants in place that say, someone has to live there for a year before they rent it,” Coers explained. They have to basically be owner-occupants for a year before they can put it up for rent. It really gets in the way of people who want to be pure investors. That lends itself more towards, ‘I bought this home, I’ve lived in it for a while, now I’m moving on to a bigger home and I want to keep this one as an investment.’ Those are more the one-off investors.”