Homeownership and the Achievement Gap. A Research Synthesis

70 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2016

See all articles by Corey Bower

Corey Bower

State University of New York at Buffalo; Cullen Foundation

Date Written: October 14, 2014


This paper investigates the potential efficacy of policies designed to increase homeownership as a means of narrowing the achievement gap by synthesizing the empirical literature linking homeownership and academic performance and reviewing relevant theory. Overall, the literature yields mixed results that offer a strong theoretical basis for, but weak empirical evidence of, such a relationship. Just over half of all models find statistically significant positive effects of homeownership on academic performance, but results are less positive when predicting achievement instead of attainment, using quasi-experimental rather than correlational models, and/or controlling for residential stability. The larger question that remains unanswered is where, when, and for whom homeownership will yield positive results. Despite the mixed results, significant reason exists to believe that increasing homeownership could narrow the achievement gap if the right policies are put in place at the right times in the right places for the right people.

Keywords: Homeownership, Education, Achievement Gap, Social Capital

JEL Classification: D14, I2, I38, R20, R31

Suggested Citation

Bower, Corey and Bower, Corey, Homeownership and the Achievement Gap. A Research Synthesis (October 14, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2832945 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2832945

Corey Bower (Contact Author)

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