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Homeownership Rate Decreases From Five Years Ago

by Peter Thomas Ricci

The homeownership rate has been on a steady decline the last five years, but will that trend continue?

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The homeownership rate has decreased in the last five years, according to Census Bureau data, and as a result, renting has become a more prominent option for many consumers.

According to a recent CNBC report, renting has gained prestige in recent years for two main reasons: first, it provides an option for those who lost their homes in the housing crash through foreclosure; and second, it provides a more affordable living option for those who cannot obtain (or afford) a mortgage under today’s tougher credit conditions.

Although homeownership is declining right now, it could recover in the future. In a recent Chicago Agent article, Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae, said that the rising costs of housing and mortgages may encourage more homebuyers to enter the market, before the costs increase any higher (we should add, though, that there are conflicting accounts on that trend).

For more perspective on where the homeownership rate is heading, check out our chart below, which covers 2008 to 2012.

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