FRISCO, Texas, Nov. 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Hedge funds and REITs are beginning to slow the pace of their single-family rental home investments, pushing real estate investors to find buyers among smaller private equity companies, according to Bruce McNeilage, founder and CEO of Kinloch Partners. McNeilage made his remarks as part of a panel discussion at the Five Star Single-Family Rental Conference in Frisco, Texas, today. "The days of the big hedge funds and REITs swooping in and buying up large chunks of single-family rental homes is coming to an end," McNeilage said. "Investors seeking to liquidate their portfolios are going to have to look for a second tier of smaller private equity companies to fill the void. They are out there, but most investors will have to work a little harder to form strategic partnerships." McNeilage also noted that escalating prices in most markets are further distancing Millenials from their first purchase. Nationally, housing prices jumped 5.2 percent in the year ending September 30. "With potential mortgage rate hikes on the horizon, Millennial first-time buyers are in a virtual mine field, feeling the pressure to take that first step, but wary of where they come down," McNeilage said. "On the other side of the equation, sellers who want to claim equity gains or improve their position may find it easy to liquidate existing properties, but much more difficult to find the next property into which to move their investment."