Due to the bursting of the bubble, it makes perfect sense that lots of people no longer believe owning a home is a good investment.
Non performance of the housing market does not explain worst homeownership rate in nearly a half century, IMHO. I ask rental applicants all the time, why don't you just buy this house? They laugh and then explain about needing years to get their income up and their credit rating restored.
Housing is tied to employment and income, and also spending choices that show up on credit reports. Homeownership rate is tied to worforce participation rate, not the badly understated unemployment rate. 100% of the 37% of adults not in the workforce and 11% of the others are unemployed or underemployed. The new, part time economy does not lend itself well to home ownership or credit restoration - as costs keep going up. Housing demand will bump up if/when real employment and take-home
income bumps up.
Almost NO ONE prefers renting to owning, waiting for the landlord to fix something, waiting for the landlord to raise your rent, having their house sold out from under them or their lease non renewed. Renting isn't cheaper than buying when interest rates are below 4%.
99% of renters I meet rent because they can't
buy right now, not because of a risk averse investment strategy. While interest rates went down for the best borrowers, every other borrowing requirement went up.
For those owning real estate without debt, the last downturn changed nothing. I sold nothing, bought a couple more, and now the values are most of the way back in most locations. Meanwhile rental demand increased making ownership even more desirable.
- Rental Manager, Ulysses Up (pronounced: yo lease is up)