Chicago's homeownership rate is the lowest it's been in a decade
despite historically low mortgage prices and declining home values. According to data compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau, 66.5 percent of Chicago's housing units were owner-occupied in the fourth quarter of 2011, down slightly from 67.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010. Nationally, the homeownership rate is the lowest it's been since 1998.
Crain's Chicago Business quotes Geoffrey Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory of the University of Illinois, who said, "Housing for much of the first part of the century was seen as both an
investment and as a piggy bank, and now with prices down, people are not