The ABC Data Exchange

Housing and Homeownership

Homeownership and residential stability are linked to many positive benefits like higher high school graduation rates and social/civic engagement.

Owning a home is a way to build assets and wealth, and it can be used as equity in case of unexpected expenses to prevent major disruption to well being.

Literature Review Highlights


Homeownership relates to the following positive factors (not necessarily causal):


  1. Higher high school graduation; [1]
  2. Provides residential stability; [2]
  3. A hedge against rising rent; [3]
  4. Homeownership is related to variables indicating social capital (voting, being part of local organizations, working to solve local problems, etc) and the relationship might be causal.  The authors claim the causal relationship might be because homeowners are more stable; [4]
  5. Children exhibit fewer behavioral problems. [5]
Literature Review References

[1] Aaronson, D. (2000). A Note on the Benefits of Homeownership. Journal of Urban Economics, 47(3), 356-369.

[2] Id.

[3] Sinai, T., & Souleles, N. S. (2005). Owner-occupied housing as a hedge against rent risk. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 120(2), 763-789.

[4] DiPasquale, D., & Glaeser, E. L. (1999). Incentives and social capital: Are homeowners better citizens?. Journal of Urban Economics, 45(2), 354-384.

[5] Haurin, D. R., Parcel, T. L., & Haurin, R. J. (2002). Impact of homeownership on child outcomes (pp. 427-446). Brookings Institution Press.

Major Findings

Higher homeownership rates were present for White residents, residents with higher educational attainment and higher household incomes.

Major findings TBD.

Housing cost burden has decreased for homeowners but remained the same for renters since 2009.
Renters are experiencing higher percentages of housing cost burden compared to homeowners.


The homeownership rate describes the percent of households who own their home. Owning a home, or other assets such as savings accounts, investments, and vehicles provides financial security that can protect households from unexpected expenses and decrease the likelihood of experiencing poverty [1]. While homeownership rates do not indicate overall wealth, or even the value of homes, they do indicate ownership of a valuable asset, which could provide financial security [1].

When determining homeownership rates by age and race/ethnicity, this indicator only considers the age and race/ethnicity of the householder, who is the individual who filled out the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey. View data notes for this measure.

Data Visualization

Homeownership (2019)

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Key Takeaways

Overall homeownership rates have not changed significantly in the last ten years.

About 63-68% of residents have lived in houses that were owned by someone in the household.

Residents with higher educational attainment had higher rates of homeownership.

In 2019, residents with a Bachelor’s Degree had a homeownership rate of 81% compared to 65% for residents with a High School Diploma or less.

Residents with higher incomes had higher rates of homeownership.

Residents with a household income of over $100,000 had a homeownership rate of 85% compared to 37% for residents with an income below $20,000.

Major disparities in homeownership rates were present by race/ethnicity.

White residents had a homeownership rate of 77% compared to 59% and 37% for Black and Hispanic/Latino residents, respectively.

Older adults have the highest homeownership rate.

In 2019, adults 65 years and over had a homeownership rate of 83%. Residents aged 18-34 had the lowest homeownership rate at 51%.

Housing Cost Burden

When a significant portion of a household’s income is devoted to housing expenses, there is less money available to cover other basic needs such as food, health care, and transportation, a situation which may result in financial insecurity [1,2]. Housing cost burden measures housing expenses as a percentage of household income for homeowners and renters. The threshold for housing cost burden is when a household spends more than 30% of their income on housing expenses. Expenses include mortgage or rent payments, utilities, property taxes, insurance, and other fees. View data notes for this measure.

Data Visualization

Housing Cost Burden of Homeowners (2019)

Use the dropdown menu below to view data on different groups.

Data Visualization

Housing Cost Burden of Renters (2019)

Use the dropdown menu below to view data on different groups.

Key Takeaways

Housing cost burden has gone down for homeowners since 2009, but stayed the same for renters.

The percent of renters experiencing housing cost burden in 2009 was 40% and 38% in 2019 compared to 21% of homeowners experiencing housing cost burden in 2009 and 14% in 2019.

Renters have higher rates of housing cost burden than homeowners.

In 2019, 14% of homeowners experienced housing cost burden compared to 38% of renters.

Residents with higher incomes have lower rates of housing cost burden.