Like Deniece said, there are all sorts of reasons. As the owner of a residential property management company in Northern Virginia, we are now seeing many of the owners of properties we've managed for many years selling now as the market has improved. There is always a cycle and an owner may not be a true investor but rather an "accidental investor" who got stuck when the market went south. Now is there chance to cash out. Just do your homework on true value of the purchase, realistic rental values and the trends, vacancy rates and expected expenses. I have a very good cash flow spreadsheet if you are serious about investing.