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The Boston Globe

Business

Kathleen M. Howley

Wary of stocks, some small investors turn to real estate

As the housing market recovers from the worst bust since the Great Depression, neophyte investors are following the lead of private-equity firms, investing in properties they can pick up cheaply, rent, and sell when values rise enough. Home prices rose 4.6 percent from a year earlier in August, the biggest gain since the end of the real estate boom in 2006, a CoreLogic index shows.

‘‘The typical small-size mom-and-pop investor has two or three properties, looking at it as an income supplement with the possibility of being able to sell at some point,’’ said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors.

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