Homeownership is still at the heart of the American Dream

Dated: January 15 2024

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Young couple standing in front of a house holding out keys in front of themBuying a home is a powerful decision, and it remains at the heart of the American Dream. Unlike renting, owning a home means more than just having a place to live – it offers a sense of belonging, stability, and freedom. According to Nicole Bachaud, Senior Economist at Zillow:
The American Dream is still owning a home. There’s a lot of pent-up demand for ownership; that isn’t going to go away.”
Let’s explore just a few of the reasons why so many Americans continue to value homeownership. 

The Financial Benefits of Owning a Home

One possible reason homeownership is viewed so highly is because owning a home is a significant wealth-building tool. That may be why Jessica Lautz, Deputy Chief and VP of Research at the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), says:
“Homeownership is the number one way to build wealth in America.”
Over time, owning a home not only helps boost your net worth, but it also sets future generations up for success as you pass that wealth down. Habitat for Humanity explains:
“Overall, homeownership promotes wealth building by acting as a forced savings mechanism and through home value appreciation. Homeowners make monthly payments that increase their equity in their homes by paying down the principal balance of their mortgage. . . . In addition, owning a home promotes intergenerational homeownership and wealth building. Children of homeowners transition to homeownership earlier — lengthening the period over which they can accumulate wealth . . .”
It can also provide meaningful financial stability compared to renting. When you buy with a fixed-rate mortgage, you can lock in your monthly housing payments for the length of your home loan. Taxes and insurance are the only things that could affect your monthly payment.

The Non-Financial Benefits of Homeownership

But, owning a home offers more than just financial benefits—it benefits you socially and emotionally too. Your home provides feelings of achievement, responsibility, and more. In a recent survey, Fannie Mae outlines just a few of these more emotionally-driven benefits, including:
“The top three were having control over what you do with your living space (94%) to having a sense of privacy and security (91%) and having a good place for your family or to raise your children (90%) . . .”

What Does That Mean for You?

If your idea of the American Dream involves greater freedom, security, and prosperity, homeownership could be a key player in bringing that dream to life. And with mortgage rates now on a downward trend, it might be a good time for you to consider making a move. If you’re ready and able to buy, know that there are incredible benefits waiting at the end of your journey. You'll gain more than just a home–you'll have a place to grow your wealth and call your very own. Like Ksenia Potapov, Economist at First American says:
“...homeownership remains an important driver of wealth accumulation and the largest source of total wealth among most households.”

Bottom Line

Buying a home is a powerful decision and the cornerstone of the American Dream. If finding a place to call your own is part of your dream for this year, let’s connect to start the process today.
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Steve Reese

My wife, Sharon, and I live in Shawnee, where I’ve been in the real estate industry since 1994. We’re firmly planted in our little community, where Sharon teaches special education English at Shaw....

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