by Phillip B. Burum, DR Horton,
President, Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter
It speaks to the importance of homeownership that today one of the nation’s - and the world’s - most prestigious institutions of learning devotes a special center just to assess and promote understanding of the importance of housing to our nation, our economy and our people. Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies does just that. Through research, education and numerous public outreach programs, the Center works to clarify and disseminate information that informs everyone from political and business leaders to homeowners and homebuyers on every aspect of housing in the United States.
And as we celebrate the benefits of homeownership every year with National Homeownership Month in June, we turn to what is one of the Center’s most important findings: homeownership is good for children.
According to the Center’s “The Impact of Homeownership on Child Outcomes”, children of homeowners are more likely to do well in school and be more successful as adults. The study found that "children of homeowners have better home environments, higher cognitive test scores and fewer behavior problems".
The study found that homeownership leads to a 13 to 23 percent higher quality home environment and the “independent impact of homeownership combined with its positive impact on the home environment results in the children of homeowners achieving math scores up to nine percent higher and reading scores up to seven percent higher with reductions in children's behavior problems of up to three percent."
More importantly, when the Center analyzed the reasons for those results. It found that one of the biggest reasons children of homeowners have greater advantages in education is due to the fact that homeowners tend to be more stable because on average, homeowners stay in their homes for about eight years while renters tend to relocate far more frequently.
According to the most recent “The State of the Nation’s Housing Crisis” released last year by the Center, stability in communities results in a greater chance that a child will attend college and have higher lifetime earnings.
This stability is not only beneficial for homeowners and their families, but for communities and local economies as well. When companies seek to start up, relocate or expand their operations; one of their first considerations is to seek out stable local populations from which they can develop their workforces.
Because homeowners are investors in their properties rather than merely tenants, studies indicate that they tend to be more involved with their communities - especially in their schools and civic leadership and activities. All of this adds up to more stable communities that generate greater revenue streams which, in turn, results in more prosperous communities.
Add to the fact that today’s new homes are the safest, most durable and most environmentally-friendly homes ever built, one can see how in addition to the economic and social benefits, children of homeowners will grow up in safer and healthier environments with improved air and water quality.
Homeownership the cornerstone of the American dream because for most Americans, homeownership is the primary source of net worth and an important step in accumulating personal financial assets over the long term. Today the technological innovations in home design and materials serve as an important part of protecting our environment and conserving our precious resources. Today homebuilding and remodeling are key drivers supporting our communities, economies and public safety. No matter how you look at it, homeownership offers benefits that span the community from the overall economy to your children’s success in school.
The Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter seeks to advance the opportunity to attain the American Dream of homeownership. For more information on homebuying, remodeling, or just enjoying your home, visit our www.biabuild.com website and have a great National Homeownership Month.