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The Game-Changing Impact of Homeownership on Net Worth

In the perennial debate of renting versus buying a home, a recent revelation from the Federal Reserve might be the clarity you need to make an informed decision this year.

The Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF), released every three years, provides a compelling insight into the wealth gap between homeowners and renters. The most recent report showcases that the average homeowner's net worth is nearly 40 times greater than that of a renter (see graph below):

One key factor contributing to this wealth gap is the growth of equity in a home. As your home appreciates in value and you make monthly mortgage payments, your equity increases. This process acts as a form of forced savings, a financial benefit not enjoyed by renters. Ksenia Potapov, Economist at First American, explains:

“Renters don’t capture the wealth generated by house price appreciation, nor do they benefit from the equity gains generated by monthly mortgage payments…”

The Predominant Contributor to Homeowner Net Worth: Equity

Home equity stands out as the primary wealth-building element for homeowners, transcending income levels (see graph below):

The green segment in each bar represents the proportion of a homeowner’s net worth attributed to home equity. Regardless of income, owning a home significantly amplifies wealth. Nicole Bachaud, Senior Economist at Zillow, underscores the significance:

“The biggest asset most people are ever going to own is a home. Homeownership is really that financial key that helps unlock stability and wealth preservation across generations.”

With mortgage rates currently favoring buyers and increased inventory in the market, there's a window of opportunity to bolster your net worth through homeownership. Whether you're a first-time buyer or looking to make a strategic move, a local real estate agent can guide you through the available options.

Considering the long-term financial advantages of homeownership, particularly in building net worth, it’s worthwhile to explore the opportunities in today’s real estate market. For personalized insights and guidance, connect with a local real estate agent who can help you unlock the wealth potential of owning a home.


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