Aug
19

Homeownership Rate Hits 51-Year Low

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July16Mkt_6-1The homeownership rate in the United States tumbled to a five-decade low during the second quarter of 2016, according to data released by the Census Bureau on July 28. At 62.9%, the homeownership rate is exactly where it was in the first quarter of 1965 when “The Sound of Music” was on cinema screens and “Downtown” by Petula Clark was at the top of the charts.

After peaking at 69.2% in the fourth quarter of 2004, the percentage of households owning homes took a nosedive in the face of the worst recession since the Great Depression and unfavorable demographics. The extent of the drop-off in the homeownership rate cannot be over-dramatized.

Between 1965 (when the Census Bureau first began to collect this data) and the deep recession of the early 1980s, the rate grew at a slow and steady rate, peaking at 65.8%. After a 15-year interlude, the number of homeowner households exploded during the mid- to late 1990s, thanks to an assortment of political and economic factors that made homeownership a particularly attractive form of housing tenure.

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