The American housing market took off during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The homeownership rate – or the share of housing units occupied by their owner – jumped by 2.6 percentage points from the first quarter to the second quarter of 2020, by far the largest increase ever recorded. By the end of 2020, there were 2.1 million more homeowners in the United States than there were a year earlier.
The surge in home sales was fueled by several factors, including historically low mortgage rates, and, as some experts speculate, the pandemic, which led many Americans to re-evaluate where and how they live. Here is a look at the mortgage rate in America every year since 1972.
Nationwide, the homeownership rate stands at 64.4%, according to the latest American Community Survey data from the U.S. Census Bureau. This rate varies substantially across the country, however, and in some counties, the homeownership rate is well above the national average.
Using census data, 24/7 Wall St. identified the 50 counties with the highest homeownership rates. Counties and county equivalents are ranked by the share of housing units occupied by their owners.
Among the counties on this list, homeownership rates range from 85.7% to 96.5%. The largest share of counties on this list are in the South, though Michigan alone is home to nine, the most of any state.
Home values are generally relatively low in the counties on this list, making homeownership more affordable for larger shares of the population. In all but 16 counties on this list, the median home value is below the $229,800 value of the typical American home. Here is a look at the 20 cities where the middle class can no longer afford housing.
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