Home Ownership This High?

Brad De Long delong at econ.Berkeley.EDU
Sun Oct 25 15:57:53 PST 1998

>Quite frankly, I asked the question because I was
>under the impression that home
>ownership was at much lower levels. Now I find
>out it's been reasonably close to 2/3
>of the population for 30 years now!
>How can that be, given the rising cost of buying a
>home and the stagnant state of real
>income for most people? Or am I mistaken about
>that too?

Stagnant real *wages* for males (if you believe that the CPI is an accurate measure of inflation (which I have begun thinking it is not, or rather, that for the poor the CPI is pretty accurate and for the rest it is no)). Conditional on your having two adults in the household, however, family incomes have risen a bunch with increasing female labor force participation.

How much, if any, of this increase in *incomes* is an increase in *material welfare* is a hard question. But it does mean that households have more cash income with which to pay their mortgages.

Brad DeLong

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