The percentage of households in the City of St. Louis that are owner-occupied

Equity Score
Indicator scores are represented on a scale from 1 to 100.
Disparity Ratio
Disparity direction: white-black
Owner-occupied households

White residents are nearly twice as likely as black residents to be homeowners.

Source: American Community Survey 1-year PUMS

A score of 100 represents racial equity, meaning there are no racial disparities in outcomes. The lower the Equity Score, the greater the disparity.

For Homeownership, a score of 100 — a score reflecting racial equity — would mean white and black residents are equally likely to own their home. It is important to note that for this indicator, equity is not our only goal; we also want to improve outcomes for all. 

More Information

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What does this indicator measure?

Homeownership measures the percentage of households in the City of St. Louis that are owner-occupied. In 2016, there were 60,218 owner-occupied households, which comprises 43.3% of all households in St. Louis.

Homeownership analysis

Owner-occupied households in St. Louis City.

  All White Black Disparity Ratio Equity Score
Owner-occupied households 60,218 38,954 18,072 - -
Households 139,002 69,105 59,116 - -
Homeownership rate 43.3% 56.4% 30.6% 1.843 to 1 47

Data Source: American Community Survey 1-year PUMS, 2016.

Data Note: PUMS data may differ slightly from estimates on American FactFinder due to differences in sampling. See PUMS technical documentation for more information. Estimates for Hispanic residents are based on a small number of sample cases and should be interpreted with extreme caution. The number of sample cases is too small to report reliable estimates for additional racial groups.

What does this analysis mean?

White residents are nearly twice as likely as black residents to be homeowners. White households are the most likely to be owner-occupied (56.4%). Hispanic households are least likely to be owner-occupied (29.5%), followed by black households (30.6%). If the rate of homeownership were equitable, there would be 15,269 more black homeowners.

Why does Homeownership matter?

Economic mobility, which is defined by the Brookings Institution as "the likelihood that a family will move up the income ladder from one generation to the next," is considered a core tenet of the American Dream. Homeownership has historically been the primary way for residents to build wealth. However, few black families were legally permitted to take advantage of homeownership opportunities in past generations. In addition, Alanna McCargo of the Urban Institute describes, "The disproportionate decline in black homeownership appears to be partly driven by the timing of their entry into the housing market—many minorities entering the market at or near the peak, when home prices were highest, and using riskier subprime lending products. When the foreclosure crisis hit, the impact was even more severe for minority buyers."

Questions for further investigation

  • Why is there racial disparity in Homeownership? 
  • What can St. Louis do to reduce racial disparities in Homeownership?
  • What initiatives are currently underway to reduce racial disparities in Homeownership?

How can I learn more about these issues?

In 2018, For the Sake of All published their report on "Segregation in St. Louis: Dismantling the Divide," which discusses the housing market and how it was shaped by policies of segregation. 

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