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Wave of Hispanic Buyers Boosts U.S. Housing Market

NAHREP: Hispanics accounted for almost 63% of new U.S. homeowner gains over the past decade despite making up just 18% of the population; and the U.S. Census Bureau found a 3.3 percentage point ownership rise after it hit a 50-year low in 2015.

WASHINGTON – Hispanics have seen the biggest homeownership gains of any ethnic group in the United States, rising 3.3 percentage points since hitting a 50-year low in 2015, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

The overall U.S. homeownership rate hit bottom in the second quarter of 2016 but has gained 1.3 percentage points since then – and the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP) reports that Hispanics accounted for almost 63% of new U.S. homeowner gains over the past decade despite making up just 18% of the U.S. population.

“The housing market would look very different today if it weren’t for a tidal wave of Latino home buyers,” says NAHREP co-founder and CEO Gary Acosta.

The states with the biggest shares of mortgages going to Hispanic homeowners are New Mexico, Texas, California, Florida, Nevada, Arizona, Illinois, Colorado and New Jersey.

A recent Urban Land Institute study found that more Hispanics wish to become homeowners, but they face challenges. While 4.6 million Hispanic millennials earn enough to afford homeownership in their area, they’re blocked by the lack of a downpayment and inventory for sale.

The Hispanic homeownership rate remains at 47.4%, which is below the rate for non-Hispanic whites at more than 73% in the first quarter. During the housing bubble, the Hispanic homeownership rate reached a high of more than 50% before falling 6 percentage points over the next eight years.

According to Zillow, between 2007 and 2015, homes in Hispanic communities were 2.5 times more likely to be foreclosed upon than homes in white communities, and homes in black communities were twice as likely to be foreclosed.

Source: Wall Street Journal (07/15/19) Kusisto, Laura; Eisen, Ben

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