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High-Income Renters Account For Strongest Growth In Houston

The number of high-income renters keeps rising in Houston and the nation.


A growing number of high-income people are choosing renting over buying a home.


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The number of Houston area renters earning more than $100,000 a year rose by 59 percent from 2008 to 2017, according to a report by Apartment List.

That compares to 35 percent growth among mid-income renters (those earning between $50,000 and $100,000) and 16 percent among those who make less than $50,000 a year.

Nationwide, high-income renters grew by 48 percent during that time period.

Igor Popov, chief economist at Apartment List, said one reason is that more people want to live near the city center.

"And largely that's reflected in the number of high-income, college-educated, young households that are moving into city centers," he said. "That's been a big shift."

There are also more suburban homes available for rent, he said. And rising home prices, stricter lending standards and student loan debt are making even high-income Millennials postpone homeownership.

High-income renter growth is strongest in Denver (146 percent from 2008 to 2017) and Austin (142 percent).

Overall, of households making more than $100,000 a year, 83 percent owned homes in 2017, both in Houston and the nation. But that number is down from 87 percent in 2008.