Homeownership Rate at Lowest Level in Over 20 Years

The latest US census data reveals that the homeownership rate has plummeted over the last ten years from 69% to just under 64%:

For the first time in more than 20 years, the homeownership rate in the U.S. has fallen below 64 percent, the U.S. Census Bureau has announced.

The seasonally adjusted 63.8 percent rate is far below the 69 percent rate just 10 years ago – a time when homebuying may have been the easiest for Americans.

And the steepest slide has come in an age band that you might not expect:

Census data shows homeownership rates for individuals aged 35-44 years are falling the fastest – from a high of almost 67 percent in 2009 to little more than 58 percent in 2015.

The article goes on to point out the contributing factors, like tight lending standards and stagnating income levels, but then it ends with a paragraph that folks in the apartment industry will not be surprised to read:

On the same day, the Census Bureau also released rental vacancy rates across the U.S., and the market could not be tighter. The vacancy rate of 7.1 percent during 2015 first quarter, and 7 percent the quarter before, are at their lowest in about two decades.

Here’s a link to a chart with showing the ownership and rent data in more detail.