US homeownership rate drops to 15-year low

Reuters – The share of privately-owned U.S. homes fell to a 15-year low in the first quarter as falling house prices and stringent lending conditions push younger Americans, in particular, into renting. The homeownership rate slipped to 65.4 percent, the lowest since the first quarter of 1997, the Commerce Department said on Monday, with the rate for Americans under the age of 35 dropping to an 18-year low. The homeownership rate, which was measured at 66.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011, peaked at 69.4 percent in 2004 at the height of a housing market boom fueled by cheap credit. Read Article