Though it’s been six years since same-sex marriages were legalized in the US, that didn’t mean an end to discrimination. It was only this year that LGBTQ+ discrimination was banned at a federal level. The LGBTQ+ homeownership rate is only 49%, compared to the overall number of 65%. The rate is particularly low for transgender individuals, at a mere 25%.
Part of the lower homeownership rate for the LGBTQ+ community can be attributed to secondary factors, but not all of it. Many of these people live in urban areas, where they are more likely to rent as opposed to buy. But even that has discrimination as an underlying factor, since a major reason they tend to live in urban areas is that these areas are usually more welcoming to the LGBTQ+ community. Moreover, the estimated purchasing power of the community as a whole is $1 trillion. It’s certainly the case that more than 49% of them have the income to purchase a home.
The fact is that LGBTQ+ people face discrimination not only from their communities, but also from real estate professionals and lenders. Less than a quarter report no discrimination at all. 13.8% say they signed documents that misrepresented themselves in order to get their documents in order. 10.6% report discrimination from real estate professionals and 5.2% from sellers. It’s not just prospective homeowners, either; 5.3% of LGBTQ+ members attempting to rent a home were denied by the landlord. Fortunately, with the anti-discrimination order being signed this year, things are looking up.
Photo by Maurice Williams on Unsplash