According to a new data release from the Census’ Housing Vacancies and Homeownership Survey (CPS/HVS), the minority homeownership rate posted an increase in the third quarter of 2019 to 48.3 percent, up 0.9 percentage points from the third quarter of 2018 (Figure 1). This year-over-year gain is higher than the gain in the overall U.S. homeownership rate, which rose 0.4 percentage points to 64.8 percent in the third quarter of 2019. A separate Eyeonhousing.org post covers the U.S. homeownership rate in more detail.
Breaking down the minority homeownership rate shows that the Hispanic homeownership rate gained the most in the third quarter, with a 1.6 percentage point increase to 47.9 percent (from 46.3 percent in the third quarter of 2018).
The black homeownership rate posted the second largest gain of 0.8 percentage points to reach 43.3 percent (from 42.5 percent in the third quarter of 2018). This is the largest gain in the black homeownership rate since the third quarter of 2017. It is important to note that this quarter’s gain stands in contrast to five out of the six prior quarters (going back to the 1st quarter of 2018), which were marked by significant declines in the black homeownership rate.
Meanwhile, Other households (Asian, Pacific-Islander, Native American, and other race households) experienced a decline in their homeownership rate, which dropped 0.4 percentage points to 58.9 percent (from 59.3 percent in the third quarter of 2018). The Other homeownership rate has declined or remained unchanged for four consecutive quarters (year-over-year declines), which is in contrast to strong gains seen for this group between the second quarter of 2017 and the third quarter of 2018.
The white homeownership grew by 0.3 percentage points to 73.4 percent in the third quarter (from 73.1 percent in the third quarter of 2018). The white homeownership rate has not declined year-over-year since the first quarter of 2017 (Figure 2).
Lower mortgage rates (at a three-year low) and a healthy job market have helped to make homeownership more affordable. In fact, housing affordability was at a three-year high in the third quarter of 2019, according to the National Association of Home Builders’ Housing Opportunity Index (HOI). These factors are most likely contributing to the recent upticks in the overall and minority homeownership rates.