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Like other aspects of the economy, U.S. homeownership statistics and rates fluctuate over time and can be unpredictable. In 1994, based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the rate of homeownership was 64% and reached its peak 10 years later at 69%. The rate rose again to almost 67% in 2020, but due to the impacts of the pandemic, declined a whole percentage point just a year later.

Due to this recent volatility, we have outlined some key facts and statistics to better inform current and future homeowners.

Key homeownership statistics

Mortgage
  • Homeownership rates in the U.S. began at 65.3% in the first quarter of 2020 and ended at 65.5% by the fourth quarter of 2021.
  • The young adult homeownership rate dropped 10% between 1960 and 2017, reflecting a shift toward renting.
  • First-time homebuyers made up 34% of all homebuyers in 2021, an increase of 3% from the previous year.
  • Typical recent home purchases were 1,900 square feet with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and built in 1993.
  • 14% of recent homebuyers were veterans and 3% were active-duty service members.
  • A majority of buyers purchased their homes for 100% of the asking price, while 29% purchased for more than the asking price.
  • The number of households increased by just 10.1 million from 2010 to 2020, fewer than any other decade between 1950 and 2010.

U.S. homeownership rates by state

The map below showcases homeownership rates by percentage for each state, based on recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

*U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey/Housing Vacancy Survey, March 15, 2022.

Quarterly homeownership rates by percentage

Typically, there is incremental movement for homeownership statistics over time. However, homeownership rates are subject to volatility around larger economic events. For example, after peaking at 69% in 2004, 2008’s Great Recession led to homeownership rates declining, falling to just 63.4% by 2016. As homeownership began to slowly recover, the rate peaked again at 67.9% in the second quarter of 2020 before falling to 65.5% at the end of 2021, most likely due to the pandemic. Homeownership rates may be subject to more volatility in the near future.

The table below showcases the quarterly homeownership rate for the past two years.

Year First quarter rate Second quarter rate Third quarter rate Fourth quarter rate
2021 65.6% 65.4% 65.4% 65.5%
2020 65.3% 67.9% 67.4% 65.8%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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Insights
  • The homeownership rate in the U.S. was at 65.5% during the fourth quarter of 2021 and was not statistically different from the fourth quarter of 2020 (65.8%) or the third quarter of 2021 (65.4%).
  • National vacancy rates in the fourth quarter of 2021 were 5.6% for rental housing and 0.9% for homeowner housing.
  • The national rental vacancy rate was 0.9% points lower than the rate in the fourth quarter 2020 (6.5%) and not statistically different from the rate in the third quarter 2021 (0.9%).

Homeownership rates: Top 10 states

Below are the top 10 states by percentage of homeownership as of the end of 2021.

West Virginia 79%
Maine 76%
Minnesota 76%
New Hampshire 74%
Vermont 74%
Delaware 74%
Alabama 73%
South Carolina 73%
Indiana 73%
Michigan 73%

*as of the end fourth quarter of 2021

Homeownership rates: Bottom 10 states

Below are the bottom 10 states by percentage of homeownership in the U.S. as of the end of 2021.

Georgia 64%
North Dakota 64%
Washington 63%
Rhode Island 63%
New Jersey 63%
Massachusetts 62%
Nevada 61%
Hawaii 58%
California 54%
New York 54%

*as of the end fourth quarter of 2021

Homeownership rates by age

A home purchase continues to be one of the largest investments many Americans will make in their lifetime. The graph below showcases homeownership statistics by age, highlighting that  for many people, the homeownership journey begins before age 35 and expands over time, with the largest group of homeowners being over age 65.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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  • The typical first-time homebuyer was 33 years old in 2021, while the typical repeat-buyer age rose to a record high of 56 years old.
  • 11% of homebuyers purchased a multi-generational home with considerations for caring for aging parents, young adult children moving back home and cost-saving.
  • Fourth quarter 2021 homeownership rates were highest for homeowners aged 65 years and over (79.%) and lowest for homeowners under 35 years of age (38.3%).
  • According to this Bankrate survey, 64% of millennial homeowners have some regrets about purchasing their home, with maintenance and hidden costs being the biggest culprits.
  • 36% of Gen Z and 13% of millennials say they are living rent-free, meaning they live with their parents or other friends and family

Homeowner rates by race and ethnicity

Homeownership statistics by race show that the highest rates of homeownership are held by White households. Although homeownership rates for both Asian and Hispanic homeowners are above or around 50%, respectively, the rate for Black homeownership remains lower at just above 43%.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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  • According to the Population Reference Bureau, White householders have historically had the highest rates of homeownership.
  • According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), minority groups still face a gap in homeownership rates compared to their White counterparts in 2022.
  • The current homeownership rate for Black Americans is 43.4%, which is significantly less than White Americans at 72.1%.
  • NAR reports Asian and Hispanic Americans to have the highest homeownership rates in a decade, at 61.7% and 51.1%, respectively.
  • This would be the first time the Hispanic American homeownership rate has reached above 50%.

Rental statistics for 2022

The cost of renting a home is increasing in a majority of the U.S. Many young Americans continue to weigh the pros and cons of owning vs. renting.

  • The March iteration of Rent.com’s monthly report finds that:
    • 7% of the markets they analyzed saw an increase in rent prices for one-bedrooms.
    • The national average for renting a one-bedroom is $1,684, which is up 4% from last year.
    • The national average for renting a two-bedroom is $1,997, which is up 21.8% from last year.

Learn more: The best homeowners insurance companies