The homeownership rate in the U.S. sits at 62.9 percent, the lowest it's been since 1965, when the Census Bureau began tracking it. The all-time high was just 12 years ago, when the rate was 69.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2004.
Charles Lane of The Washington Post writes that, as a group, homeowners have the same equity, 58 percent, in their properties now as they did then. The low ownership rate is a good thing, Lane argues, because that means higher equity on a per-household basis. Homeowners are now more secure, and the economy is less vulnerable.
The balance was even better in 1983, when the homeownership rate was 65 percent and equity was at a high of 70 percent.