Homebuyers to make comeback in next decade

Special to The Log

According to a new report by the Mortgage Bankers Association, more young Americans will move out of their parents' homes or stop renting and start becoming homeowners again over the next decade.

Homeownership has plummeted to less than 64 percent — its lowest level in half a century — from 69 percent in the mid-2000s. By 2024, however, between 14 million and 16 million new households are expected to be formed in the United States. Of those, as many as 13 million will be homeowners and as few as 3 million will rent.

The bankers' report estimates that as many as 1.3 million additional owner households will be created each year, substantial growth from the Great Recession years.

"It's a huge amount of housing demand any which way you cut this," said Lynn Fisher, MBA's vice president of research and economics.

If current homeownership rates by age and race hold, the report's authors anticipate the number of owner-occupiers will rise modestly to 64.8 percent. If those rates revert to higher long-term trends, the homeownership rate could climb to as high as 66.5 percent.

However, some economists have projected that the U.S. homeownership rate will continue to dip considering that Hispanic families are on track to represent the biggest share of new households, and they tend to have low rates of homeownership.

At the same time, millennials have also been stubbornly slow to transition from renters to buyers.

This article was contributed to The Log by Florida Realtors.