Where are Tri-Cities area rentals concentrated? 

Don Fenley 

GRAY, Tenn. – The undisputed highest concentration of single-family rentals in the Tri-Cities region is in Bristol, Va.’s 24201 zip code. Current data list 4,550 rentals. That’s better than half (66.7%) of all the households in that zip code. And all but 115 are occupied. 

Currently, almost one-in-three households in the region’s 40 zip codes are classified as non-owner-occupied investment properties. In all, there are 62,361 of them. The most current occupancy count shows all but 1,605 are occupied. That means the occupancy rate is 97.2%. It continues to be one of the highest rental occupancy rates in E. Tenn. 

 Bristol’s 37620 has the second-highest number of rentals (3,903). That’s 28.1% of the housing in that zip code. All but 191 are rented. 

Elizabethton’s 37643 has 3,481 rentals, which accounts for 30% of the zip code’s households, and only 45 are vacant.  

The latest count shows almost 15% of all single-family and condo rentals have out-of-state owners.  

Residential rentals have always been a favored investment for mom-and-pop investors. But the current market has attracted more out-of-state and institutional investors. Institutional investor sales are those made to non-lending entities that purchased at least 10 properties in a calendar year. During the last quarter, they accounted for almost 5% of all residential sales in the Kingsport-Bristol metro area. There were not enough sales in the Johnson City metro area to be included in the analysis. Kingsport-Bristol saw more investor activity because it had a large inventory of lower-priced homes that attracted investors and wholesalers.

NETAR is the voice for real estate in Northeast Tennessee. It is the largest trade association in the Northeast Tennessee, Southwest Virginia region, representing over 1,600+ members and 100+ business partners involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. Weekly market reports and information for both consumers and members are available on the NETAR website at https://netar.us