What does this measure?
The percentage of all occupied housing units (not vacant) that are owner-occupied (not rented).
Why is this important?
Homeownership is an important factor for neighborhood stability and civic participation. A home is a vital financial asset for a family and an investment in both the local neighborhood and surrounding community.
How is our county doing?
In 2017-21, the homeownership rate in Essex County was 64%, level since 2000, on par with the national rate, and lower than the state rate. Although the rate in Essex County has remained steady overall, homeownership rates varied greatly among local communities. The lowest rate was in Lawrence (29%) followed by Lynn (48%) and Salem (52%). The highest rates were in Boxford (96%), West Newbury (93%) and Groveland and Middleton (both 92%).
How do we compare to similar counties?
Essex County's homeownership rate in 2017-21 was similar with Middlesex, MA and Westchester, NY, but lower than Lake, IL, at 74%. Similar to Essex, rates in Middlesex and Westchester changed little since 2000, while Lake, IL dropped 4 percentage points.
Notes about the data
Multiyear figures are from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The bureau combined five years of responses to the survey to provide estimates for smaller geographic areas and increase the precision of its estimates. The survey provides data on characteristics of the population that used to be collected only during the decennial census. However, because the information came from a survey, the samples responding to the survey were not always large enough to produce reliable results, especially in small geographic areas.
Data for this indicator are released annually in December.