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HousingWire Magazine: December 2021/ January 2022

AS WE ENTER A NEW YEAR, let’s look at some of the events that we can look forward to in 2022. But what about what’s next for the housing industry?

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Colony Starwood Homes rebranding as Starwood Waypoint Homes

Second replacement of Colony brand name this week

For the second time in two days, a business that carries the “Colony” brand name announced that it plans to shed that name and begin operating under a new name.

On Tuesday, Fortress Investment Group announced that it acquired Colony American Finance, a lender that provides investor financing for single-family rental homes, townhomes, condos, and small multifamily properties.

According to a release, the company will be rebranded as CoreVest American Finance Lender.

And Wednesday, Colony Starwood Homes, an owner and operator of single-family rental homes that formed in 2016 when Starwood Waypoint Residential Trust merged with Colony American Homes, announced that it is rebranding as Starwood Waypoint Homes.

According to the company, its name change takes effect on July 28, 2017. The company will still be traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “SFR.”

The company said that the name change “reflects the sale in March by Colony NorthStar, Inc. and affiliates of Colony Capital, LLC of their entire remaining ownership stake in the company.

The relationship between the various Colony companies is a bit convoluted, but it all started with Colony Capital, which merged earlier this year with NorthStar Realty Finance.

Thomas Barrack founded Colony Capital in 1991. Over the years, Colony Capital grew and eventually founded Colony American Homes in 2012 to serve as the company’s single-family rental arm. Colony American Finance operated as the “single family lending unit” of Colony American Homes, which, again, merged with Starwood Waypoint Residential Trust in 2016.

Barrack served as co-chairman of the board of trustees of Colony Starwood Homes from January 2016 through June 2017.

Now, Fortress is buying Colony American Finance and changing its name to CoreVest American Finance Lender and Colony Starwood Homes is rebranding as Starwood Waypoint Homes.

Colony Starwood Homes’ business model shifted a bit over the last few years.

Last year, Colony Starwood Homes exited the non-performing loans business, selling off 1,675 non-performing loans for $265 million.

At the time, the real estate investment trust said that it planned to use the funds from that sale to grow its portfolio of single-family rental homes.

And last month, that’s exactly what the company did, agreeing to buy 3,106 single-family rental homes from GI Partners, a private investment firm based in San Francisco, for $815 million.

And now, the company will be operating those single-family rental homes under a different brand name.

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