Chicago-based JLL, which specializes in commercial real estate, is branching out into the rental market with an investment in Roofstock, which is based in Oakland, California. Roofstock offers a “marketplace for investing in the $4 trillion single-family rental (SFR) home sector.”
In a press release, the companies said “the deal includes a strategic minority investment in Roofstock by JLL and a commercial partnership that enables JLL to expand its service offerings in the residential sector.”
In addition, Roofstock also purchased Stessa, an asset management software-as-a-service (SaaS) product for the single-family rental home market. JLL’s technology division, JLL Technologies (JLLT), had owned Stressa since January of 2018.
The market for single-family rentals “is seeing strong demand from our investor clients – both private and increasingly institutional,” said Richard Bloxam, JLL’s CEO, capital markets.
Regarding the deal, Yishai Lerner, co-CEO, JLL Tech, said in the release, “We see a strategic investment coupled with a commercial partnership as the best approach” for getting investors into the single-family rental market.
Gary Beasley, co-founder and CEO of Roofstock, said his company is “thrilled” to welcome the Stessa team, and is “excited” to integrate its asset management and accounting software into Roofstock’s retail product offerings.
The move comes at a time of great turbulence in real estate markets — particularly the commercial sector. In an August interview with PYMNTS, Sanjay Rishi, CEO for corporate solutions, Americas at JLL, said the commercial real estate market may be poised to embrace a range of hybrid models as people emerge from the pandemic. The initial reaction of most observers, said Rishi, is that the shift to a virtual, work-from-home model will be the norm. However, JLL’s own research has found that a majority of 3,000 surveyed workers — 58 percent — miss the office.
In an interview with PYMNTS, Roofstock’s Beasley said that advanced technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), can help match investors and properties (including tenants) to help generate stable investment income.