Wealth inequality between homeowners and renters continued to be remarkably pronounced in 2017: Homeowners’ median wealth was nearly 89 times larger than the median wealth of renters and not entirely because of home equity.
The 2017 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) data shows continued disparities in wealth – the value of assets owned minus the liabilities (debts) owed – revealed in last year’s report on household wealth in 2015.
Just two assets — home equity and retirement accounts — accounted for 61.7% of households’ wealth in 2017.
The SIPP’s sample size enables comparisons of the assets of many populations and groups, such as low-income households and households with or without children.
Briana Sullivan is an economist and Donald Hays is a survey statistician in the Census Bureau’s Social, Economic and Housing Statistics Division.