2010 Census Data Shows Second Hightest Homeownership Rate on Record Despite Largest Decrease since 1940

Dennis Norman St Louis Realtor, homeownership rates, census dataYesterday, statistician’s from the U.S. Census Bureau gave a briefing on highlights of the housing characteristics data contained in the 2010 Census. Several interesting facts came out, but the one that I found most interesting was that the data shows the U.S., at 65.1 percent, has the second highest homeownership rate on record for the period (see chart below). It’s not that all the recent talk about the decline in homeownership was unfounded however as the census data did show that the drop in the rate of homeownership during this last census period (2000-2010) of 1.1 percent is the largest decrease since the period from 1930-1940.


Highlights from the briefing:

  • As of April 1, 2010 there were 131,704,730 housing units in the U.S.
    • Housing inventory increased by 15.8 million units (13.6 percent) from the 2000 Census
    • 116,716,292 (88.6 percent) of the housing units in the U.S. are occupied, leaving 11.4 percent vacant.
  • housing-units-by-region-2010-census

    Source: U.S. Census Bureau

  • Housing units increased in every state since the 2000 census, however there was more growth in housing units in the South and West than in the Midwest and Northeast.
    • The South grew 17.9 percent to 50.0 million units and the West grew 17.3 percent to 28.6 million units. In contrast, the Midwest grew by 9.3 percent to 29.5 million units and the Northeast grew by 6.6 percent to 23.6 million units.
    • regional-homeownership-rates-2010

      Source: U.S. Census Bureau

  • The homeownership rate in the Midwest is 69.2 percent, the south 66.7 percent, the Northeast 62.2 percent and the West 60.5 percent.
  • All but one metropolitan area had more homeowners than renters in 2010. With a homeownership rate of 49.5 percent, Manhattan, Kan., was the only metro area where renters outnumbered homeowners. In 2000, five metro areas had more renters than homeowners.
  • Of the occupied housing units in the U.S. 65.1 percent are owner-occupied and 34.9 percent renter-occupied
    • From 2000 – 2010 total occupied housing units in the U.S. grew by 10.7 percent, owner-occupied units grew by 8.8 percent and renter-occupied units grew by 14.2 percent.
  • Total vacant housing units grew 43.8 percent from 2000 to 2010 while the vacancy rate grew from 9.0 percent to 11.4 percent during the period.


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