January 27, 2005
STATEMENT FROM SECRETARY ALPHONSO JACKSON ON RECORD HOMEOWNERSHIP RATE
The Census Bureau released data today showing that a new national homeownership record was set in 2004. The new annual rate of 69.0 percent surpasses the previous record of 68.3 set in 2003. The new quarterly rate of 69.2 percent ties the all-time record set in the second quarter of 2004 and means there are now 74,414,000 American families who own their own homes.
Minority homeownership also set records. A new record annual rate of 51.0 percent was set in 2004 and the quarterly news is even better. Minorities set a new quarterly record of 51.4 percent in the fourth quarter. There are now 15,504,000 minority homeowners in the United States.
"These numbers show that housing is still leading the way in our rapidly recovering economy. President Bush is committed to building on these accomplishments so that people from every walk of life can have the opportunity to become homeowners," said Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson. "The President's housing initiatives are breaking down the barriers and paving the way for more Americans, particularly minorities, to achieve that dream."
Two years ago, the President challenged the nation to create 5.5 million new minority homeowners by the end of this decade. Between the second quarter of 2002 (the start of the President's Initiative) and the fourth quarter of 2004, there has been a net increase of 2.2 million minority homeowners. This increase represents 40 percent of the 5.5 million goal.
In 2005, the Administration will propose legislation that would further boost homeownership by creating a Zero Downpayment Mortgage option in FHA. HUD will also ask Congress to enact a Homeownership Tax Credit that will encourage the production of homes for moderate-income families.
Last year, HUD announced $161.5 million in funding for the American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI), providing down payment and closing costs assistance to 40,000 low-income families a year. In 2004, HUD also announced new adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) products making homeownership available to an additional 40,000 families annually.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development as well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.