Metros With the Highest Ownership Rates

February 28, 2018

Buying a home is a lot easier in some areas of the country than others, where the inventory of affordable homes is greater and where their salaries can stretch further. Allentown, Pa.—boasting the highest homeownership rate in the nation in 2017, at 73.1 percent—is one such place. The median home list price in Allentown is $217,050, well below the national median of $274,900, according to® data.

The town, about an hour outside of Philadelphia, saw many of its factories close in recent years but has been having a revival in recreating itself as a prime distribution center for major companies like Amazon, Walmart, Nestle, and soon FedEx. Faith Brenneisen, a real estate sales associate for Keller Williams Real Estate in Allentown, told® that 40 percent of her clients are out-of-towners moving into the area for jobs and a lower cost of living compared to nearby cities. On a four-bedroom $365,000 listing recently, she received eight offers in just a few days.

The national ownership rate was 63.9 percent in 2017. The following metros have the highest homeownership rates, according to U.S. Census Bureau data:

  • Allentown, Pa.: 73.1%
  • Pittsburgh: 72.7%
  • Louisville, Ky.: 71.7%
  • Grand Rapids, Mich.: 71.7%
  • Columbia, S.C.: 70.7%
  • Birmingham, Ala.: 70.6%
  • Detroit: 70.2%
  • Minneapolis: 70.1%
  • Nashville, Tenn.: 69.4%
  • Raleigh, N.C.: 68.2%

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the metros with the lowest homeownership rates tended to fall along the coasts, where high housing costs are curtailing some home shoppers from buying. Fresno, Calif., and Los Angeles have the lowest ownership rates at 48.5 percent and 49.1 percent, respectively.

Source: “The Surprising Metros With the Highest—and Lowest—Homeownership Rates,”® (Feb. 27, 2018)