Despite Student Debt, College Grads More Likely to be Homeowners

The benefits of obtaining a college degree may outweigh the burden of student loan debt when it comes to homeownership, according to data from Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey. Fannie economists found that student loan holders between ages 25 and 44 that completed a bachelor’s degree or higher were 27 percent more likely to own their own homes than those that did not. Homeownership rates were highest among debt-free college graduates at 43 percent.

Homeownership rates were lowest among individuals who started college and accumulated student debt but failed to earn their degree — those individuals were 32 percent less likely to own a home than high school graduates that did not attend college. In addition, those who did not finish school but still had student loans were more likely to be behind on their loan payments than those who graduated with debt. The data showed that student debt also affected the outlook of many renters on homeownership; renters with student loan debt were 28 percent less likely to say they expected to buy their next home.

“Encouraging a higher rate of college completion among those who enroll in higher education may be particularly helpful in mitigating student loan delinquency rates and the lower rate of homeownership for those with student loans,” the authors concluded.