Abstract

The rate of homeownership among African-American households is considerably lower than white households in American urban areas. This paper examines whether racial differneces in residential location outcomes are among the factors that contribute to the large racial differences in homeownership rates in major US metropolitan areas. Based on the 1985 metropolitan sample of the American Housing Survey for Philadelphia, the paper does not find any evidence that existing racial differences in residential location in Philadelphia decrease the homeownership rate among African Americans. Rather, the empirical evidence suggests that African-American residential location outcomes are associated with lower than expected racial differences in homeownership. Therefore, after controlling for neighborhood, racial differences in homeownership are larger than originally believed, and the ability of racial differences in endowments to explain hoeownership differences is more limited.

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