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Cityscape: Volume 24 Number 2 | Measuring Blight


Measuring Blight

Volume 24 Number 2

Mark D. Shroder
Michelle P. Matuga

Researching Homeownership Inequalities: A Life-Cycle Perspective

Stephanie Moulton
John Glenn College of Public Affairs, The Ohio State University

In 2019, the median Black household in the United States held only one-eighth the wealth of the median White household—$24,100 in total net wealth, compared with $188,200 in net wealth for White households (Bhutta et al., 2020). This large racial disparity in wealth has its roots in disparities in homeownership. Housing wealth is the primary source of wealth for many Americans, and Black households own homes at much lower rates than White households. In 2019, only 42 percent of Black households owned a home, compared with 72 percent of White households (McCargo and Choi, 2020)—a 30 percentage point gap in the homeownership rate. This gap has persisted over decades due, in part, to historically racialized policies that locked Black households out of ownership (Rothstein, 2017).

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