Baby Boomers Prop Up the Homeownership Rate

May 27, 2015

The homeownership rate has been declining since 2004, especially for young and middle-aged households, an analysis by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies found.

But the rate could’ve been worse. Numbers show that older households, aged 65 and older, represent nearly 36 percent of household growth from 1994 to 2014. Though this age group also experienced declines in the past two decade, they typically have high homeownership rates, nearly 80 percent in 1994 and 76 percent in 2014.

“The aging of the population has been an important buffer against the homeownership declines of the last decade,” writes Joint Center Research Analyst Rocio Sanchez-Moyano. “But it cannot be a prop forever, as eventually baby boom households age into their 80s [when] homeownership rates begin to decline.”

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