21+ Mortgage Statistics That Come As (No) Surprise
Updated · May 20, 2023
Did you know that more than 50% of all American homes are bought with a mortgage?
The US mortgage market is expected to keep growing even after it hit somewhat of a slump during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As such, there are many intriguing facts about it, and we are excited to present them all to you.
Keep on reading to find out the most interesting mortgage statistics!
Captivating Mortgage Facts (Editor’s Choice):
- As of 2021, the US mortgage debt is $17.1 trillion.
- The loans collateralized by real estate sum up to $14.9 trillion.
- 65% of people owning a home take out a mortgage to buy a house.
- 33% of homebuyers are people with children under 18 living at home.
- Generation X has the highest mortgage debt at $259,100 on average.
- 60% of all first-time homebuyers are Millenials.
- The average age of home buyers is 45 years.
Mortgage Statistics for 2022
Luckily, the pandemic is now somewhat under control, and life is slowly going back to normal.
That’s also true for mortgages. Now that it’s almost the middle of 2022, it’s pretty likely the previous year’s trends will continue. Want to know for sure?
Let’s find out together!
1. Mortgages became popular in the 1930s.
(Source: American Financing)
Before that, the concept of mortgage was not favored at all in the US. Interestingly, insurance companies were the first to introduce it to the broad public. It was during the Great Depression, and they hoped to take advantage of borrowers who failed to pay.
2. The homeowners' mortgage in the US is 65.4%.
(Source: US Census Bureau)
The exact number of mortgages in the US is unknown. According to the US Census Bureau mortgage report for Q1 2022, the homeownership rate is 65.4%. In comparison, 2021 ended with a homeownership mortgage of 65.6%. Since 2019, the mortgage in the US has been only increasing.
3. Around 40% of US homes are mortgage-free.
The mortgage data derived from Zillow showed that in 2017, 37% of homes were mortgage-free. Most of them were owned by baby boomers and older adults, who had more time to pay off their debt while building up wealth.
4. There is no limit to how many people can be on a mortgage.
(Source: Rocket Mortgage)
The mortgage lending industry allows the so-called “joint mortgage,” which is basically a loan shared by multiple people. All applicants need to be qualified for approval. However, some lenders may have certain restrictions.
5. The average mortgage in America is $1,487.
California is the state with the highest median US mortgage—$2,421, whereas West Virginia has the lowest—$1,052.
6. In Q4 2021, purchase loan mortgage originations were $424 billion.
According to mortgage origination statistics, the mortgage origination volume is still at its heights. It reached a peak in Q4 2020 when the funds' rate was at its lowest. Since the situation with the pandemic is getting better, mortgage origination is decreasing.
7. As of February 2022, mortgage application numbers are at their lowest.
At the beginning of February, mortgage applications dropped by 13.1% and reached their lowest level since December 2019. This is most likely due to the high mortgage rates and high prices, as well as the low inventory.
The previous mortgage facts painted us a clearer picture of the US mortgage market size. Now, we are about to dive deeper into the statistics and explore the latest mortgage industry news.
8. The primary US mortgage market is valued at $17.6 trillion.
The primary market refers to the mortgages outstanding. The secondary one is the value of mortgage-backed securities outstanding. In 2021, only the latter was $11.9 trillion.
9. In 2020, Quicken Loans had the most significant mortgage lending market share.
The value of their mortgages was placed at $313.41 billion. The following four complete the top five list: United Shore Financial Services (with a $130.59 billion difference from the leader), Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, and LoanDepot.
10. In July 2020, Quicken Loans overtook the mortgage origination market share.
(Source: S&P Global)
Previously, Wells Fargo was the mortgage industry’s leader. However, Quicken Loans managed to grow by 73.9%. It is also important to mention that most of the top lenders in the mortgage financing industry were nonbanks. This is due to their different operating model.
Rates are among the most crucial mortgage factors. Depending on how low or high they are, the market is either losing or growing. What are mortgage rates going to look like for the rest of 2022? Let’s see the current statistics!
11. In December 2021, the US mortgage delinquency rate was at a record low.
The mortgage default rate reached 3.4% in December 2021—something that hasn’t been achieved since 1999. In comparison to December 2020, that was a decrease of 2.4%.
Mortgage statistics from 2022 reported that mortgage delinquency rates by state were highest in Louisiana, Mississippi, and New York and lowest in South Dakota, Utah, and Idaho.
12. The mortgage default rate increased in February 2022.
This was the first increase in the past nine months! The reason was that homeowners who were supported by the federal government during the pandemic now have to resume their mortgage payments. And unfortunately, some of them are unable to.
13. As of 2021, the average down payment on a house for all buyers is 12%.
(Source: The Mortgage Reports)
A down payment is a payment that home buyers have to make in the early stages of the buying process. The average number is based on the value of the home. The researchers also calculated the average down payment by age group:
- Age 22–30: 6%
- Age 31–40: 10%
- Age 41–55: 13%
- Age 56–65: 18%
- Age 66–74: 23%
- Age 85–95: 21%
So what will the average down payment on a house be for 2022—higher or lower than last year’s?
14. The first-time homebuyer rates are not lower.
(Source: The Mortgage Reports)
In fact, the interest rate of people buying their first home is still determined by the same criteria—personal credit score, loan type, down payment amount, and the overall interest rate market.
Mortgage Debt Statistics
Mortgage debt is mainly influenced by the number of home sales. It has been growing steadily ever since 2012. Ten years later, the total mortgage debt in the US may reach and even surpass $18 trillion!
15. As of 2021, the US mortgage debt was $17.6 trillion.
The total US mortgage debt marked an increase of almost $10 trillion from 2020. It mostly comes from one-to-four family residences. In Q1 2021, the latter accounted for $11.78 trillion of the debt.
16. In 2021, the average mortgage debt was $229,242.
Generation X has the highest debt ($259,100), whereas the Silent Generation has the lowest—$163,254. It was also reported that generally, women have lower average debt than men—$192,368 and $211,034, respectively.
Home Buying Statistics
We have discussed the key mortgage statistics. Now, it is time we focused on the most exciting part—the home buying facts!
17. The state of West Virginia has the highest percentage of homeownership.
According to homeownership statistics, West Virginia is an undeniable leader with 79%. It is followed by Maine and Minnesota, both with 76%, and New Hampshire, Vermont, and Delaware—all with 74%. At the bottom of the ranking are Nevada with 61%, Hawaii with 58%, and California and New York with 54% each.
18. In 2020, 31% of all homebuyers were first-timers.
The percentage of first-time homebuyers remained the same as the previous year. The average age of a first-time homebuyer is 33 years old—something that probably won’t change much in 2022, too. This is the median number for people of all ages and ethnicities.
19. Six out of ten first-time homebuyers are Millennials.
(Source: dot loop)
Further first-time homebuyer information discloses that people born between 1981 and 1996 account for more than 50% of first-time buyers. Their median income is $72,500, and they usually buy a three-bedroom house for an average of $230,000.
20. The average age people buy a house is 45 years old.
(Source: Business Insider)
Furthermore, 73% of homebuyers are white, and more than half are married or have a serious partner. In 2021, the most common purchase among the typical homebuyers was a single-family home between 1,000 and 1,999 square feet.
Will the average age to buy a house change even slightly in 2022? We are intrigued to know!
21. The average length of homeownership is 16 years.
(Source: iProperty Management)
Housing statistics reveal that people with less education and income are more likely to live in the same home for longer. However, the homeowner statistics pointed out that 42.3% of respondents resided in their house for less than ten years.
22. In 2021, the median home cost increased by $50,000.
(Source: Ramsey Solutions)
This same year, the average price was $347,000. In December, it even reached $355,000, which led experts to believe the increase in 2022 will be even more considerable. Moreover, it’s also expected that buyer demand will remain strong throughout 2022.
Our collection of mortgage statistics probably makes it clear exactly how popular mortgages are in the US.
Thanks to such loans, more than half of Americans have the chance to buy a house.
Even though paying a debt for 30 years might be triggering, for a lot of people, it is worth it.
What is your opinion on mortgages—do they have more pros or cons?
With an eye for research, Aleksandra is determined to always get to the bottom of things. If there’s a glitch in the system, she’ll find it and make sure you know about it.