The Rise of the New Land Lords 

After gobbling up foreclosed homes in Oakland and other communities, wealthy corporate investors are now creating what Wall Street calls the "rentership society."

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"We also believe that there continues to be a large amount of potential supply that we can purchase at potentially attractive pricing," wrote Starwood Waypoint's executives. "At the current rate of delinquency and non-performance, it appears that over 4.0 million homeowners in the United States will be affected." This in turn is creating a $400 billion opportunity for America's new corporate land lords.

As for Cheri King's future, in the near term she will become part of the rentership society, a tenant forced to seek shelter from a housing market increasingly controlled by fewer and larger investors. Her time is up this month and she has agreed to move out of her home of fourteen years, and into an apartment. "I'm gonna get my house back one day, though," she vowed. 

Correction: The original version of this story misstated Alex Schafran's job title. He is a lecturer in urban geography at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom who has studied the foreclosure crisis in the Bay Area.

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