Building Black Homeownership Bridges: A Five-Point Framework for Reducing the Racial Homeownership Gap

Published: 2019 | Alanna McCargo, Jung Hyun Choi, and Edward Golding | Urban Institute


Homeownership is an important wealth-building source and a foundation for economic stability. Owning a home can provide a stable place to live and remove significant economic uncertainty in the form of fixed housing costs. These benefits are well documented, yet there is persistent inequality in access and attainment of homeownership across racial lines and less wealth accumulation for black households through homeownership. The continually depressed black homeownership rate and overall wealth gap have reached alarming levels. The black homeownership rate has persistently lagged behind that of white families, a gap that has widened since the Great Recession. In 2017, the black homeownership rate (41.8 percent) was the lowest of all racial and ethnic groups. Between 2000 and 2017, the black homeownership rate dropped 4.8 percentage points—a loss of about 770,000 black homeowners—while the homeownership rates of other racial and ethnic groups either remained constant or increased.