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Variable Definitions:
Homeownership Rate: The percentage of housing units occupied by the owner of the unit

Renter Rate: The percentage of housing units who are occupied by someone who is not the owner of the unit

American Community Survey (ACS), 5-year estimates, Table B25003 

Years Available:

2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021

*Note: Each year of available data shown above is a 5-year estimate, or an average of data collected over a five year period. 5-year estimates are used to increase the reliability of the data at small geographies like neighborhoods and census tracts. The years shown on the NDSC map represent the final year of the five year average (e.g. “2010” represents 2006-2010 data, “2011” represents 2007-2011 data, and so on). For the most impactful comparison of data over time, the ACS recommends comparing non-overlapping years (e.g. 2010-14 with 2015-19).

Why are these variables important to measure?

Homeownership Rate
Homeownership is a staple of American culture and can provide benefits to both families and neighborhoods. Because homeowners have made a financial investment in their location, they move less frequently.

On the neighborhood level, homeowners are sometimes more likely to be engaged in local social and political activities that create stronger and more cohesive communities. School performance, crime rates, and economic development affect property values, so homeowners may be more invested in neighborhood development and improvement processes. 

Since the Great Recession in 2008, homeownership rates have been declining across the country, particularly for younger generations. While renting provides flexibility and can be a good option for some, high rates of homeownership can create important neighborhood benefits and are a key measure of a stable economy. 

Aaronson, Daniel. “A Note on the Benefits of Homeownership: A Note on the Benefits of Homeownership.” Journal of Urban Economics, vol. 47, no. 3, 2000, pp. 356-69. Link.

Dietza, Robert D. and Donald R. Haurin. “The social and private micro-level consequences of homeownership.” Journal of Urban Economics, vol. 54, no. 3, 2003, pp. 401-50. Link.

Callis, Robert, and Melissa Kresin. “Quarterly residential vacancies and homeownership.” U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau, 20 Jan. 2018. Link.

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