Is the ‘Housing Shortage’ the Result of Housing-Hoarding by the Wealthy?

by Charles Hugh Smith
Of Two Minds

Those seeking to buy a house as shelter for their household can’t compete with the wealthy seeking assets to snap up and hoard for appreciation.

Longtime readers know I’ve been addressing housing issues from the start of the blog in 2005. Let’s start with the general context of housing in the US, courtesy of the US Census Bureau, which tracks occupancy and the number of housing units nationally: Quarterly Residential Vacancies and Homeownership, 4th Quarter 2023

All housing units 145,967,000

Occupied 131,206,000
Owner 86,220,000 59%
Renter 44,985,000 31%

Vacant 14,761,000 10%

Non-seasonal (i.e. not second homes owned by the wealthy for their recreational use) 11,177,000

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