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Hispanic buyers prop up U.S. housing market

(Credit: iStock)

(Credit: iStock)

A sluggish housing market is receiving a much needed jolt from Hispanic first-time home buyers.

The homeownership rate for Hispanics grew more during the past several years than for any other race or ethnic group, including whites, according to the Wall Street Journal. Since 2015, overall homeownership rate has risen 3.3 percentage points.

During the past decade, Hispanics made up 63 percent of new U.S. homeownership, despite only accounting for 18 percent of the total U.S. population, according to the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals.

Homebuilders and brokers are increasingly relying on Hispanic buyers, since housing demand has slowed down considerably due to the rising costs of single-family homes. In April, home price growth slowed to its lowest level since 2012.

Yet these affordability concerns that are hurting the broader housing market are also impacting Hispanic homebuyers. While 4.6 million Hispanic millennials make enough money to buy a home in their neighborhoods, most won’t get past the down payment or a simple lack of inventory, according to a study by the Urban Institute.

At the same time that Hispanics are making up a larger share of the market, the homeownership rate among the African American community has fallen 8.6 percentage points since its peak in 2004.

Some analysts say black communities have struggled to recover financially since the housing crisis, which has made it more difficult to buy a home, according to the Journal. [WSJ] — Keith Larsen

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