Hispanic Homeownership Posts Biggest Gain Since 2012, But Pandemic Poses New Challenges

June 17, 2020
Happy hispanic family
By godfer

Of all the demographics, the Hispanic homeownership rate posted its biggest gain since 2012 due to an increase in the average household income and drop in unemployment. But challenges may lie ahead: 30 percent of Hispanic households’ main source of income comes from a family member working in the food service, transportation, or personal care industries, some of the hardest hit sectors during the pandemic. Though unemployment financial assistance helped many households pay their mortgages, the federally funded extra benefit will run out on July 31st. States and cities across the nation are reopening, but restaurants are still not running at full capacity. 

Nationally, the homeownership rate peaked to 69.2% in 2004 Q2 and fell to a low of 62.9% in 2016 Q2. Only the Hispanic homeownership rate has surpassed the 2004 Q2 level for each race, from 47.4% to 48.9% (+1.5 ppt) while it has declined for White non-Hispanic (-2.5 ppt), Black (-5.7 ppt), and Other Race (-2.7 ppt).  From 2012 when the housing market recovery started, the homeownership rate increased across all races and ethnicity, with the largest gain in the Hispanic homeownership rate (+2.6 ppt) compared to White non-Hispanic (+0.2 ppt), Black (+0.9 ppt), and Other Race (+0.9 ppt).

A big factor that explains the gain in the Hispanic homeownership rate is income gain. Over the period 2012-2018, the median income among all households of all races rose by 22%. However, Hispanic-headed households saw a larger gain in median household income of 27%, with median income rising from $40,417 to $51,404.  Households in which the head of the family was an American Indian and Alaska Native or self-the race as Two or More Races also saw a large gain in median household income of 27%, but these income gains did not result in the same large homeownership rate gains as the income gains did for Hispanic-headed households.

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