Canadian census data indicates that Canadian home ownership was 68.4% in
2006 - an all time high. I haven't been able to find home ownership
rates for subsequent years - but the forclosure and home-abandonment
rates in Canada are nowhere near what they've been in the US during the
past 5 years.
Indications are that Canada held onto higher ownership rates over the
past 5 years and now exceed the rate in the US by anywhere from 1 to 4
Canada was able to reach record high ownership rates (comparable to the
US peak in 2004) without resorting to irresponsible bank lending
practices and the subsequent bubble and crash that happened in the US.
The American Dream.
Alive and well -> in Canada...
Homeownership rates fall to 66% as downturn nears a bottom
By Julie Schmit, USA TODAY
Updated 12h 30m ago
Fewer Americans own homes and many of them are continuing to see values
By Charles Buchanan, AP
The U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday that the nation's homeownership
rate fell to 66% in the fourth quarter, continuing a seven-year drop
from a fourth-quarter peak of 69.2% in 2004. At the same time, U.S. home
prices fell 1.3% in November from October and were 3.7% below 2010
levels, the Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index indicates.
Falling homeownership — and prices — reflect the worst housing downturn
since the Great Depression. And while there are signs that the housing
industry's downturn may at least be nearing a bottom, the impact of the
collapse will be evident for years to come, economists say. As of
November, average U.S. home prices were back to mid-2003 levels, S&P
"Americans are less keen on homeownership knowing now that prices can
fall," says Paul Dales, economist with Capital Economics. Even if
people want to own a home, they may not be able to, given the difficulty
in getting financing for a mortgage, Dales says. The National
Association of Realtors says many purchase contracts appear to be
falling through for that reason.
Many economists expect home prices to continue to fall this year and
maybe into next year before stabilizing and then showing little or no
appreciation for some time. "The trend is down, and there are few, if
any, signs in the numbers that a turning point is close at hand," says
David Blitzer, chairman of S&P's index committee.
Phoenix was the only city in Case-Shiller's 20-city index where home
prices rose in November from October. They were up 0.6%. On a
year-over-year basis, only two cities showed rising values. Detroit was
up 3.8%, and Washington, D.C., 0.5%, the Case-Shiller data show.
While prices are still falling in most areas, there are signs of
increased home sales. Existing home sales rose in December for the
third consecutive month, the National Association of Realtors says. And
pending home sales, while dropping more than expected in December, were
still above levels a year before, NAR says. "Home prices will be the
last thing that moves up" after increasing sales and shrinking
inventories, Blitzer says.
The homeowner vacancy rate fell again in the fourth quarter, the Census
data show, to 2.3% from 2.4% in the third quarter and from 2.7% in the
fourth quarter last year. The 2.3% rate is the lowest since early 2006
and "leaves the visible inventory at a level consistent with house
prices bottoming out later in the year," Capital Economics says.
The drop in homeownership rates has been most pronounced in the West. As
of the fourth quarter, the homeownership rate there stood at 60.1%, the
Census data show. That's down from 64.5% in the fourth quarter of
2006, which is about when home prices began their five-year tumble.
The West is home to three of the states most affected by foreclosures,
which have hurt homeownership rates. Nevada, Arizona and California were
the top three states last year with the highest foreclosure rates,
market researcher RealtyTrac says.
While homeownership drops, more people rent. Almost 34% of occupied
homes in the fourth quarter were rented, according to the Census data.
That's up slightly from the same quarter a year earlier. The rental
vacancy rate of 9.4% for the quarter was the same as a year ago but down
from above 10% rates in the fourth quarters of 2009 and 2008, the Census
data show. Higher rents are expected as more people rent, economist