Not everyone wants to be a home owner, I don't get it, but there it is. A lot of renters CAN"T qualify for a mortgage, a lot of them are displaced homeowners these days and I am making a pretty good supplemental income convincing landlords they will make good tenants in spite of their recent financial difficulties. A lot don't know they can qualify for a mortgage due to the tremendous (and false) media hype these days. And a good many of them don't want the responsibility of homeownership.
While renters are still a good source of leads for first time home buyers, they are not as good a source as they once were owing to the fact that there are so many of them who truly can't qualify, those who don't want to buy because their stay in a particular area is transient, and the ones who don't want the responsiblity and are now mroe afraid than ever to purchase a home. I think smart realtors will add rental business to their mix for the foreseeable future until the fear factor can be quelled.