By Pat Loeb

By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia’s rate of homeownership has dropped by seven percent, according to a report out Wednesday.

KYW’s Pat Loeb reports that’s not necessarily bad news.

It’s true, says Pew’s Philadelphia Research Initiative director Larry Eichel, that home owners are usually the people with long-term commitments to their communities.

“So they can be seen as a force for stability, which can be a really good thing; they also can be force that can get in the way of revitalization,” Eichel said.

Eichel says Pew’s research shows the drop in owner occupied homes has been offset by an influx of renters, who tend to be young — and that’s good news. He says the rate remains high for a major city, at 52 percent, and Philadelphia has another distinction.

“The extraordinarily high number of low income people who own their homes,” Eichel said.

Eichel says more than a third of homeowners make less than $35,000 a year, the second highest rate of low income homeowners in the country.

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