Home Buying Trends House Hunting

Why black homeownership rates lag even as the housing market recovers

Written by Christopher G. Cox

A decade after the housing crash destroyed the American Dream for millions of homeowners, black homeownership rates have dropped to levels not seen since the 1960s, hobbling African-Americans’ efforts to build their wealth.

Nationally, only 42.2 percent of blacks owned homes in 2016, compared with 71.9 percent of whites, according to a new report by Harvard University‘s Joint Center for Housing Studies.

And in Chicago, the gap between black and white homeownership rates is even more extreme. Only 38.9 percent of African-Americans owned homes in the Chicago area in 2015, compared with 74 percent of whites. Before the housing crash, almost half of African-Americans in the Chicago area owned homes, according to Harvard’s research. Latinos in the Chicago area also lag when it comes to homeownership. Only 50.5 percent of Latinos owned homes in the area in 2015.

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About the author


Christopher G. Cox

Christopher G. Cox has over 20 years of experience in the real estate and finance industries. He has understands the complexities and diversity of the real estate market, and he has a passion of helping people realize the American Dream.