senior home ownership and debt

Owning your own home is the great American Dream.   Home Ownership by older Americans, over age 65, has always been the highest percentage homeownership of any other demographic, however there are some very real shifts in the trends surrounding homeownership, debt, and older Americans.

1.   Older Americans are holding more debt than ever related to their home.  It used to be that Older Americans largely lived in “paid off” homes.    Older Americans holding mortgages increased from 22% in 2001 to 30% ten years later.   An increase in debt, for the population that relies largely on fixed income, is not a good sign, as interest rates, and therefore the return on that fixed income, have fallen over that same 10 year period.

2.  Older Americans hold MUCH more debt in their mortgages.   Over a 10 year period the median mortgage debt for those over 65 has risen from $43,000 to $79,000.  At the same time, reporting on equity in their homes has also showed a decline.  Older Americans Owe More money, and have less equity in their homes than 10 years ago.

3. Th squeeze on fixed income is inevitable.  over 50% of retired Americans spend 30% of their total income in pure housing related expenses.

The message for younger Americans?  Pay a little extra every month, beat down the compound interest demon, and when you hit your golden years, on fixed income, you will have less housing expense to pay for, and more available funds to live the lifestyle you worked so hard for.

St. Petersburg Debt Collection Attorney

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