The types of homes people in the United States live in have changed over the 60-year period from 1940 to 2000. However, the level of single-family detached homes has remained fairly consistent during that period, in the 60 percents. In 1990, it dropped slightly to 59 percent but rebounded to 60 percent in 2000. Single-family detached homes were at their highest level in 1960, making up more than 2-in-3 of the total housing inventory (see graph).
Single-family attached houses (row houses and townhouses) comprised 5.6 percent of the inventory in 2000. Their share of the inventory was highest in 1940, at 7.6 percent.
Apartment housing with 2 to 4 units in the building was at its highest level in 1950, when it made up almost one-fifth of the total housing stock. By 2000, it had dropped to less than one-tenth of the inventory.
Units in larger apartment buildings of 5 or more units increased dramatically from 1960 (11 percent) to 1990 (18 percent). In 2000, they represented 17 percent of the housing stock.
Mobile homes experienced a significant growth over the 60-year period. In 1940, the number was so small that they were not counted separately; instead they were included in the “Other” category with boats and tourist cabins. In 1950, mobile homes, alone, made up only 0.7 percent of the inventory and by 2000 had increased to 7.6 percent of the total housing stock.
Note: The numbers in the tables represent housing units within different types of structures and sizes; they do not represent the number of residential buildings. For information on residential buildings, see the Residential Finance Survey.