I agree with a lot of this. I personally do love REITS. I did not see you mention though the best thing physical real estate has going for it (in terms of building wealth), leverage. Where I’m from (Canada) we bought our house with only 5% down, got a stupid cheap mortgage at 2.4% and our mortgage payment is less than our rent was.
On top of that we are lucky to live in a hot market, the house has increased by 50% in 2 years or 1000% compared to our down payment.
Obviously not everyone will get such cheap mortgages anymore or have the luck of a hot market. I agree for some it might make sense to rent, for others owning is a good option.