Ever wonder what the rate of homeownership in Lancaster County was in the first quarter of 2020? Or what the average median income of a typical household is? Do you enjoy graphs and pie charts? Well then the latest Congressional District Report for the 116th Congress, as provided by the National Association of Realtors, might just be for you. It contains answers to all of these wonderful questions and more. Don’t feel like reading it? That’s OK . . . I’ll break it down for you.

But first, what exactly is the report and what is its purpose? Well, the main purpose is to provide important data about real estate and the housing market and how it relates to our economy for our congressional and local leaders in the 116th congressional district, specifically District 11 in the case of this report. District 11, for those unfamiliar, represents Lancaster County and a portion of York County. Basically the report aims to keep leaders up-to-date on the housing market as real estate does have a major impact on the economy after all. It also aims to assist Realtors in advocating for sustainable and affordable homeownership. So this report goes over all kinds of information, from homeownership rates to what types of homes people live in, to unemployment rates and average median home prices. So let’s take a look at some of the main bullet points. Keep in mind, some of this data is based on information obtained from the 2018 Census as that contains the most recent data in many cases.

Homeownership Rate Q1 2020
The rate of homeownership rose to 65.3% in the first quarter of 2020. But how does that compare to rates in recent years? Well, in 2004 rates hit a high of 69.2% and in 2016 hit a low of 62.8%. So while it’s not the high seen over a decade ago, it’s encouraging to see that homeownership has risen since its lowest in just a few short years. When comparing statistics from 2004, it’s interesting to note that while homeownership has decreased among all age groups, it has seen the largest decrease in the 35-44 age group. As far as race and ethnicity, Hispanic households have seen an increase in homeownership while others have seen a decrease overall.

Median Income and Net Worth of Homeowners
The median household income for homeowners in the 11th District was $66,863 in Q1. To get more specific, median income for the 25-44 year old age group was $71,312, The 45-64 year age group was $80,734, and the 65 year and older age group was $47,889. Mortgage payments accounted for about 18% of a household’s income.

Property Value and Real Estate Taxes
What about median value and taxes? Based off of information from the 2018 Census, the median value of owner occupied homes was $211,100. With a mortgage it was $214,200, and without a mortgage it was $204,900. Median real estate taxes were $3,592. With a mortgage it was $3,666, and without a mortgage it was $3,454. In total that equates to $738.4 million in paid real estate taxes.

Where People Lived
So what types of homes do people live in? Single detached units accounted for 77.5% of owner occupied homes. Single attached homes were 17.7 percent, with two units or more accounting for 1.4% and mobile/other types of homes accounting for 3.5%. Again this is based on information from the 2018 Census.

Unemployment Rates
2020 has turned out to be . . . an unconventional year to say the least. It’s been like driving through a forested area when all of a sudden your GPS loses signal and you end up in a river . . . a river of bees. Anyway, because of the global pandemic we find ourselves in uncertain economic circumstances. The first quarter of 2020 has been tough on the economy. Many have been laid off and are now unemployed. And those that are working have also been affected economically. So what about unemployment rates? The unemployment rate for District 11 sits at 3.2%. To put that in perspective, Pennsylvania has an unemployment rate of 5.1% with the unemployment rate for the whole country at 3.8%. Keep in mind that these are rates based on homeowners who are unemployed and not the total unemployment rate taken as a whole (people that rent are not figured into these stats). The total unemployment rate in Pennsylvania for the month of May was 13.1%, just to give you an idea.

Other Fun Facts
In 2016 the median net worth of homeowners was $231,400, 45 times the $5,200 median net worth of renters!
In Q1 2020 housing and real estate construction accounted for nearly 20% of gross domestic product.
Based on the most recent data from 2018, 19.2 million people are employed in construction, real estate, rental and leasing — making up 10% of total employment.

These are the major statistics mentioned in the report. There is more that the Congressional District Report goes into detail with; however, for some of it you will need a degree in astrophysics to understand it. But if you’re curious to know more, or maybe you just need something to help you fall asleep at night, you can find out more here.

Richard Boas, III, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices HomeSale Realty

Facts, opinions and information expressed in the Closing Comments Blog represent the work of the author and are believed to be accurate, but are not guaranteed. The Lancaster County Association of Realtors® is not liable for any potential errors, omissions or outdated information. If errors are noted within a post, please notify the Association. Posts represent the author’s opinion and are not necessarily the opinion of the Association.

Lancaster County Association of Realtors®

Lancaster County Association of Realtors®