The national homeownership rate in the fourth quarter of 2018 was 64.8 percent, according to the latest U.S. Census Housing Vacancies and Homeownership report. This was slightly above the 64.2 percent rate from the third quarter and the 64.4 percent rate from the fourth quarter of 2017. But despite the scant annualized uptick, the fourth quarter of 2018 marked the eighth consecutive quarter of year-over-year gains.
During the fourth quarter, approximately 88.2 percent of the housing units were occupied and 11.8 percent were vacant. Owner-occupied housing units made up 57.2 percent of total housing units, while renter-occupied units made up 31 percent of the inventory. National vacancy rates in the fourth quarter 2018 were 6.6 percent for rental housing and 1.5 percent for home-owner housing.
The fourth quarter 2018 homeownership rate was highest in the Midwest (69.3 percent) and the South (66 percent) and lower in the Northeast (61.3 percent) and the West (60.9 percent). Homeownership rates were highest for those householders ages 65 years and over (78.8 percent) and lowest for those householders under 35 years of age (36.5 percent).
Among racial demographics, non-Hispanic whites had the highest homeownership rate at 73.6 percent, followed by Asian-Americans at 58.1 percent and African-Americans at 42.9 percent. The homeownership rate for Hispanic householders, which is factored separately from racial demographics, was 46.9 percent.