For more than four decades, Dr. Horton has built homes for homeowners, but this past winter he tried something new. In a pine-tree neighborhood north of The Woodlands, she has built 124 homes not for homeowners, but for renters. She rented it out and put it on the market as a package deal for a different type of buyer: an investor.
The winning bid, $31.8 million, was 79 percent more than the $17.8 million the local community incurred to build, market and sell. For comparison, the average home a builder sold to a homeowner in that quarter only went for it 34 percent More than costs. On the earnings call, analysts marveled at the trade.