Is The Homeownership Rate Bouncing Back?

Since peaking at nearly 70 percent in 2004, the homeownership rate has been falling. In fact, it fell to a 48-year low during the second quarter of last year. Of course, there are many factors that contributed to the drop off. But, according to a recent study, the changes that have taken place over the past 12 years can be seen most dramatically when looking at the numbers generationally. For example, the study found that the homeownership rate has seen its biggest decline among Americans between the ages of 35 and 44. Among that group, the number of homeowners is 11 percent below its peak. Comparatively, the rate among consumers under the age of 35 is 9 percent off its peak and the rate among Americans 65 and older has actually risen 2 percent. In other words, most of the drop in homeownership has been among Americans 44 and younger. The encouraging news is that many would-be buyers on the younger end of that spectrum have expressed an interest in homeownership and are planning to buy once they’ve put together some savings. The situation among 35-to-44 year olds, however, may be a bit more complicated. This is due to the fact that many of them are boomerang buyers who bought their first home just before home prices plummeted. Over the past few years, as home values have bounced back, more of these potential buyers have seen their financial situation improve, which may help lead them back down the path of homeownership. More here.

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