U.S. homeowners increase to record 69.6 million

Real Estate Watch

August 01, 1999

Families who own their own homes numbered a record 69.6 million in the first quarter of this year, the National Association of Home Builders reported.

Boosted by a strong economy and low interest rates, homeownership nationwide rose to 66.7 percent in the first quarter, up from 65.9 percent in the corresponding period last year.

Along with the increase in the national average, gains have also been made in the homeownership rate for minority and immigrant households.

Since the first quarter of 1994, the homeownership rate for African-American households has risen 4.2 percent to 46.3 percent.

The homeownership rate for Hispanic households increased 5.9 percent in the same time period, to 46.2 percent.

"The evidence suggests they are headed in the right direction and advancing at a very strong pace," said NAHB President Charlie Ruma.

Historic gains were also made in the homeownership rate in the nation's cities where, in the first quarter of 1999, the rate rose above 50 percent for the first time.

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