Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

College Education Boosts Potential for Homeownership

As college graduates are thinking about what lies in store for them economically this equation may include whether or not they can achieve the American dream of homeownership. Here we show data that indicates that graduates with a Bachelor’s degree or higher are more likely to become homeowners compared to those with only a high school degree, primarily because they generally earn more and face a lower likelihood of being unemployed.

  • The homeownership rate for those with a Bachelor’s degree or higher is 75 percent, compared to 65 percent for those with a high school degree or some college. The national rate is about 66 percent.
  • The median earnings of a Bachelor’s degree holder ($48,309) is about twice that of a high school graduate ($26,699).
  • The unemployment rate of a Bachelor’s degree or higher holder is less than 4 percent, about half than that of a high school graduate (7.4%) or about a third of a person with less than a high school degree (11.4%) (May 2013 data).
  • What this means to REALTORS®: College education boosts the potential for homeownership, with the homeownership rate of those with a Bachelor’s degree or higher about 10 percentage points above those with only a high school degree/some college.

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