Economic Center Blog

Do Unexplained Homeownership Gaps Exist?

By Mark Fleming on April 20, 2017

Homeownership is a goal shared among all people, regardless of race or ethnicity, and  remains the main driver of wealth creation for the majority of households in the United States. That is why it is vital to understand the underlying characteristics that influence the probability of homeownership. Over the last several months, my research has explored the influence of marital status and family formation, education, income and economic factors on  homeownership rates. Today, I examine how ethnicity impacts the probability of homeownership.

Read More ›

Topics: Homeownership Progress Index, Insider, Education

Can You Spring Break Into Homeownership?

By Mark Fleming on March 16, 2017

Spring break is fast approaching, that playful time of year when beach cities are inundated with college students and tourists. As housing economists, spring break is exciting because it coincides with the beginning of the spring home buying season! While we may not seem to have much in common with the college crowd, there is an underlying connection: education.

Read More ›

Topics: Homeownership Progress Index, Millennials, Insider, Education

Is Love The Answer To Declining Homeownership?

By Mark Fleming on February 13, 2017

For Valentine’s Day, we pondered the question, could more love lead to an increase in homeownership? This is a serious question because marriage and homeownership, perhaps the two most enduring institutions of our society, have shaped the economic fortunes of many Americans.

Read More ›

Topics: Homeownership Progress Index, Insider, Millennials, Education

Life, Liberty, And The Pursuit Of Homeownership

By Mark Fleming on November 18, 2016

It’s that time of year again. The time when we come together and celebrate the American tradition of giving thanks for the many blessings in our lives. Often we give thanks for having the basic necessities of life: food, health, water and shelter. While all of these things are vital to human existence, as a housing economist, I naturally tend to focus on shelter.

Read More ›

Topics: Millennials, Homeownership Progress Index, Education

Automation Angst – The Polarization Of The Labor Market In The 21st Century

By Mark Fleming on October 11, 2016

Success achieving the American Dream of homeownership is, in large part, dependent on the ability to earn a good income. For much of the last century, a job in manufacturing provided a stable and solid income. In fact, after World War II, the United States was the manufacturer to the world, as America’s post-war economic boom changed the way we worked, where we lived and our ability to own a piece of the American Dream.

Read More ›

Topics: Education, Income

Relationship Between Educational Attainment And Homeownership Becoming More Important

By FirstAm Editor on May 5, 2016

We’ve posted the annual First American Homeownership Progress Index (HPRI), which measures the level of homeownership and the underlying demographic and economic factors that influence the probability of homeownership over time and geography based on IPUMS Census Data. The HPRI declined 1.8 percent year-over-year, and is down 7.6 percent from the peak in 2005. The index is currently just 0.4 percent above the 25-year low point that was set in 1995.

Read More ›

Topics: Homeownership Progress Index, Education

Is The American Dream An American Reality?

By Odeta Kushi on August 10, 2015

For young people throughout the 20th century, as well as Millennials today, becoming a homeowner has been a symbolic representation of achieving the American Dream. At a time when many claim that this dream is at greater risk for Millennials than it was for preceding generations, it is important to investigate whether this fear has a basis in truth.  In a recent article by the Economist, it was noted that homeownership in Britain is becoming a thing of the past as homeownership rates for Millennials lag behind those born in the 60’s and 70’s. But how does this compare with U.S. Millennials?

Read More ›

Topics: Millennials, Education

"Stay In School, Kid" - The Relationship Between Education And Income

By Mark Fleming on July 8, 2015


We have published several blog posts recently on the impact of education on income. It should be common knowledge that higher levels of education correspond with higher incomes. But how do income brackets break down across education levels? Or asked differently, how badly do you need a bachelor’s degree if you want to make six figures?

Read More ›

Topics: Education, Income

Talking About My Generation: Millennials Waiting For Homeownership

By FirstAm Editor on June 25, 2015

In several of our recent blog posts, we have touched on Millennials and their various characteristics, from the sizeable Hispanic representation, to the importance of education when it comes to owning a home. We have seen that Millennials are the most diverse generation to date. There is also an ever-increasing need for higher education in today’s economy and housing market. In this post, we are going to focus specifically on how Millennials compare to previous generations across various dimensions.

Read More ›

Topics: Millennials, Education

Differences In Homeownership Rates Across Age And Ethnicity - Part 2

By Mark Fleming on June 4, 2015

In a previous blog post, we explored the relationship between the age of the US Hispanic population and its homeownership rate; now, let’s examine a second factor: income. As shown in the first figure, higher income clearly correlates with higher rates of homeownership. Just like our measure of age and homeownership in the last post, the biggest gaps are between the lower brackets, with the higher bracket gaps progressively diminishing in difference. This should be a fairly intuitive conclusion. However, what might not be as obvious is the underlying cause of income differences.

Read More ›

Topics: Income, Education