Middle-income Homeowners Gained $120,000 in Wealth Over the Past Decade
A new housing report by the National Association of REALTORS® reveals middle-income homeowners accumulated $122,100 in wealth as their homes appreciated by 68% in the last 10 years. The report, Wealth Gains by Income and Racial/Ethnic Group, speaks to the value REALTORS® bring to consumers when helping buy and sell homes that build generational wealth.
While not everyone has the same opportunities for homeownership, data show substantial variations and inequalities in homeownership rates across different income and racial and ethnic groups. For instance, low-income homeowners were able to build $98,900 in wealth in the last decade from home price appreciation only, while upper-income households saw an increase of $150,800.
“This analysis shows how homeownership is a catalyst for building wealth for people from all walks of life,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “A monthly mortgage payment is often considered a forced savings account that helps homeowners build a net worth about 40 times higher than that of a renter.”
Along with the wealth gains accumulated in the last decade, homeowners also saw their debt drop by 21%. Many homeowners who were able to refinance and secure a rate lower than 4% in the months following the onset of COVID-19 may have paid off an even larger amount of their mortgage, Yun noted.