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The Round-Up Volume 21: Bring On 2021

A year of turmoil comes to a close. And we’re excited about what lies ahead.

December 17, 2020

What a year it has been.

From a global pandemic to a historic uprising against systemic racism, 2020 is a year we won’t soon forget. As the year comes to a close, we feel moved to reflect on what’s transpired and think about the ways we can embrace optimism to reshape the world ahead.

There’s a lot to be hopeful about in 2021.

Feature Story

Where There’s Hope: Vaccine, Housing, and More

Vaccine

This week, the U.S. passed a grim milestone of 300,000 Covid-19 deaths, but hope arrived with our first wave of vaccinations. What an unbelievable achievement to identify a novel virus and deliver multiple effective vaccines in less than a year.

The implications reach far beyond the realm of healthcare to heal our nation in many ways.

Although we are not on the other side of this yet, it’s looking like we’ll soon be traveling unrestricted, giving hugs (remember those?), and gathering with our neighbors for community events. 

Housing

Unlike the aftermath of the 2007-08 U.S. financial crisis, housing remained stable through the throes of pandemic. In many cases, real estate fared well––especially for single-family homeowners—and continues to do so.

Yes, we’re worried about the most vulnerable renters who may be on the hook for $70 billion by January, when a federal eviction moratorium expires. But, we’re optimistic about the underlying fundamentals and believe that pandemic housing shifts, caused in part by a newfound ability to work remotely (thanks, Zoom), could speed the 2021 recovery.

Furthermore, this period of turmoil presents an unprecedented opportunity to rethink deeply rooted American constructs down to the very notion of renting vs. owning. That’s why it was only fitting we brought Rentership into the world on the 4th of July––to empower We the People with unprecedented access and opportunity. 🚀

The Midwest

We’re particularly bullish on the Midwest, where Rhove is proudly based. As dense metros like New York and San Francisco struggle to combat a pandemic-driven exodus, people are rediscovering the convenience, affordability, and friendliness of the Heartland.

Amid all the year’s challenges, Midwestern states are holding strong as beacons of innovation and hope, with some industries actually growing during the pandemic.

Here in our hometown of Columbus, we’re seeing an emphasis on renewable energy as the Columbus Partnership and City government work to modernize transportation and civic tech. Ohio State University continues to be a key player in the research-and-innovation space as a driver in local economic development efforts. 

Oh, and flying cars

Political Sanity

With the November 3rd election in the rearview mirror, political tensions appear to have cooled off—especially within minority communities.

The share of Black and Latinx adults who say they feel angry about the state of the country dropped sharply in the weeks following the election, according to a survey from the Pew Research Center, while feelings of hope increased.

Although Covid-19, racial injustice, and climate change exposed society’s deep-seated issues—including America’s housing woes—we see these cracks in the foundation as opportunities to be better. To be a fairer, more inclusive society.

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New From Rhove

Rentership is a Win-Win

When we launched Rentership on Independence Day, the big question was how property owners would react to a new category in housing in which renters could instantly become owners.

Who better to address the topic than Brett Kaufman, Founder and CEO of Kaufman Development and a Co-founder of Rhove? Following the launch of Rentership at Kaufman Development’s Gravity community, Brett joined us for the inaugural Gravity Stakeholder Meeting––an exclusive gathering of Gravity stakeholders––to reveal why he’s so enthusiastic about Rentership.

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In Other News

Parting Thoughts

Columbus is a big part of the reason we’re optimistic. We’re proud to call the city home and agree with Brett Kaufman when he says the city is “very well positioned” moving forward and that “the massive growth we’ve always said we’re on the verge of is actually happening now.”

Talent, capital, large employers, customers. All the ingredients are here. We could have built Rhove anywhere, but we chose Columbus for that very reason.

Like most people, we’ll remember 2020 as a challenging, terrifying, and distressing year. But we’ll also remember it as the year we planted a seed. The year we disrupted the status quo. The year we introduced a new category of housing amid a global pandemic and social unrest. 

We couldn’t be more excited to continue turning renters into owners in 2021, embracing an audacious idea and inspiring others to dream big.

There’s a case for optimism in 2021. A case for healing, growing, and reshaping the world going forward.

As our gaze shifts to the horizon, we’re energized. Are you?