- Senator Raphael Warnock in July raised concerns about large corporations buying homes in his state, but Wall Street executives did so at a firm of tens of thousands.
- According to Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, since 2020 the Georgia Democrats have taken nearly $38,000 from top employees at Blackstone, the world’s largest private equity firm.
- Brian Ann, a professor at the Georgia Tech School of City and Regional Planning, told the Daily Caller News, “When business owners convert those properties into rentals, the new tenants for those renovated single-family homes are not African Americans. will probably happen.” Foundation.
Georgia Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock recently sounded the alarm about large corporations buying entire homes in his state. However, he has accepted campaign contributions from Wall Street executives to a private equity firm that has the same practice.
According to Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, since 2020, Warnock’s campaign to buy homes in Georgia and the United States has raised nearly $38,000 with a market cap of about $130 billion from executives at Wall Street firm Blackstone. Is. At the same time, Warnock said in a July hearing that Georgia is “in the midst of a housing crisis” and raised concerns “about large institutional investors” that some experts say are raising rents and crowding out minority communities. have been.
“Georgians don’t have the luxury of waiting several years for house prices and rents to fall,” the senator said at the Senate Banking Committee hearing in July on the rising cost of buying homes and real estate in Georgia . (Raphael Warnock swore off corporate PACs money – but took thousands of PACs funded by big corporations)
“I think we need research to effectively understand how private equity is affecting the Atlanta and Georgia markets and across the country, and I look forward to introducing legislation to address this issue very soon.” I hope so ‘ Warnock added during the July hearing.
Brian Ann, a professor in Georgia Tech’s School of City and Regional Planning, told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the neighborhoods targeted by corporate investors are those where a majority of residents and home sellers are black.
“When this happens, African-American (will) individual homebuyers compare relatively poorly to other racial groups when it comes to bidding/buying homes for corporate investors to consider,” said Ann, noting that Black Homes in the Areas wrote a July study on property decline. Corporate investors wrote to DCNF in an email.
“When business owners convert these properties into rentals, the new tenants for such renovated single-family homes are likely to be non-African Americans,” one said.
David Levine, Blackstone’s co-head of US real estate acquisitions, who has been involved in a $100 billion real estate investment since joining the company in 2010, donated $2,900 to Warnock’s campaign in February. Michael Nash, co-founder and president of Blackstone’s home loan strategy group, also donated $2,900 to the senator’s campaign in February.
According to multiple reports, Blackstone has spent billions on real estate in Atlanta since at least 2013. Bloomberg reported that the New York-based company spent $100 million on 1,400 properties in Atlanta in 2013, the largest wholesale purchase in the home leasing industry at the time.
The outlet reported that about 16% of properties purchased in 2013 were Section 8 homes, where low-income tenants receive federal grants.
The private equity giant invested $300 million in Tricon Residential in 2020 and created a separate company called Invitation Homes in 2012, which it sold in 2019. Both companies own thousands of single-family homes in Metro-Atlanta.
The company will invest hundreds of millions in homes in the North and South Atlanta suburbs in 2021, the Atlanta Business Chronicle reported, including $50 million in homes in Clayton County. Black residents make up more than 73% of the population, according to the Census Bureau, and the county has a poverty rate of about 17%.
Blackstone executives claimed in February 2022 that their rental investments were designed to offset inflation, the New York Times reported.
A Blackstone spokesman told DCNF that it has a portfolio company called Home Partners of America that owns about 0.2% of “total domestic stock” in Atlanta. The portfolio company has a $1 billion program to “serve low- to middle-income families and historically underrepresented communities” by providing residents “below market value” and renting your home 10% below. ‘ said the spokesman.
Stephen Lawson, a Georgia Republican strategist, said, “In standard Washington fashion, Rafael Warnock is pocketing himself with campaign money while Georgians are struggling to pay for gas groceries because of their disastrous voting record.” DCNF. Warnock is mostly vacating – but in November voters will have the final say and it will be Warnock who is left out in the rain.”
But Fred Hicks, a pro-Warnock political adviser in Georgia, brushed off the idea that it was hypocritical for Warnock’s campaign to take money from Blackstone while raising concerns about corporate home buying.
“That’s less than 1% of what he collected,” Hicks told DCNF. “This is one of the most important races in the country and I expect many smaller donors to donate to both candidates. Republicans will do what they have to do to score points.”
According to MarketWatch, more than 42% of homes for sale in Metro Atlanta sold to corporate investors in the third quarter of 2021. Atlanta’s Democratic Mayor Andre Dickens told Bloomberg in June that there should be a cap on home-buying investors.
The median home price in Georgia skyrocketed 14% between April 2021 and April 2022, the outlet reported, and rent increases have led to higher Georgia eviction rates. The Washington Post reported that investors in 2021 put nearly 60% of home purchases in South Fulton, Atlanta’s 30349 ZIP code, which is more than 91% black and has a poverty rate of over 19%.
A spokesman for the Georgia Republican Party told DCNF, “Raphael Warnock will do whatever it takes to keep his seat in Washington, even if it means leaving the people he has to represent.”
In November, Warnock faces Republican nominee Herschelle Walker, a retired NFL player. According to the FiveThirty-Eight voting average, Senator Walker leads by two points.
Warnock’s campaign did not respond to DCNF’s request for comment.
Content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation is available free of charge to all eligible news publishers capable of reaching large audiences. For licensing options for our original content, please contact [email protected]