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Please see the notes below about where these numbers come from a some explanation.

Home ownership rate

Albany metro home ownership rate 2008-2017

Albany metro home ownership rate 1986-2017

Bonus chart: cost of owning vs. renting

Albany metro home owner costs vs gross rent 2007-2016

The Capital Region's home ownership rate ticked upward last year for the first time in a while

Albany metro home ownership rate 2008-2017

The Capital Region's home ownership's most recent peak was in 2010. It ticked up for the first time since then in 2017. Do note that the scale for the rate starts at 50. There's a chart with a from-0 scale inside. / data via US Census Bureau

Another few bits for the apartments / rents discussion...

The home ownership rate in the Albany-Schenectady-Troy metro area ticked upward for the first time since 2010 last year.

The Albany metro's rate was 64.1 percent, according to the Census Bureau. That was up from 61.3 the year before.

That's interesting, in part, because there's evidence that the upswing in rents in the Capital Region also flattened out last year. Maybe it's a matter of demographics as the population peak of Millenials grows older. Maybe rents have just risen to a point where it makes more financial sense to buy a house. (As with any complicated topic, it's probably some of those things and a bunch of other stuff, too.)

Anyway, you know that we have an additional chartage, because of course...


They're at the top in large format -- click or scroll all the way up.

About the bonus chart up there

One part of the picture here could be that rents have risen to the point that buying a house is either a pretty close financial substitute, or maybe even a better financial deal.

So to take a smudgy, back-of-the-envelope look at that idea, we pulled the Census data for monthly owner costs for home owners with mortgages in the Albany metro over the past 10 years (leading up to 2016, the most recent year available) and compared them to the median gross rent for those years. Then we computed a simple ratio -- owner costs to gross rent.

And from that we produced the cluttered, not-great bonus chart. But it does point toward the idea that owning a home in the Albany metro has become a somewhat better deal on a monthly basis relative to renting over the last 10 years.

About the numbers

These numbers are from the Census Bureau's Housing Vacancies and Homeownership (CPS/HVS) data for the 75 largest metros.

One note about the Capital Region data: The Albany metro's boundaries changed as part of the 2000 census. The Census currently considers the Albany-Schenectady-Troy metro to include Albany, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, and Schoharie counties. Before 2000, the list also included Montgomery County. So the numbers before and after that point are comparing somewhat different baskets.

Home ownership rate: Here's the Census fact sheet about how it collects data on homeownership rate.

The home owner cost and gross rent numbers are from the American Community Survey 1-year estimates.

Selected monthly owner costs with mortgage: Here's the Census definition for selected monthly owner costs. (Short version: mortgage costs + taxes + utilities.)

Gross rent: Here's the Census definition for gross rent. (Short version: rent + utilities).


+ This post was inspired by a recent publication from the Center for Economic Growth.


+ Maybe all those new apartments are starting to have some effect on rents

+ Apartments, apartments, and more apartments


Would be interesting to see what kind of owned homes are in the mix. From the previous AoA post, 3BR apartments rent for $1500 - pretty much same as an owned home number. I am not sure how many 1BR homes are out there - probably not many... Household size is bigger for owned as well, as reported by census.

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