Black homeownership rates have dipped a record-low of 8.6 percentage points since their peak in 2004, while Hispanic families have seen the biggest growth in homeownership of all ethnic groups since 2015, according to U.S. Census Bureau Data, reported in The Wall Street Journal.

The homeownership rate for blacks has been on a decline since 2004, when nearly half of all African American families owned a home.

That number fell to 43% in 2017 compared with the Hispanic homeownership rate of 42.6% at the time.

The reasons for the downturn are complex and include discrimination, a lack of affordable housing in some areas, low inventory and rising student debt.

“Half of all African Americans to the market are first-time buyers,” Jessica Lautz, director of demographics and behavioral insights at the National Association of Realtors, told The Washington Post in February. “So grappling with student debt and affordability issues generates a much greater barrier to homeownership.”

Additionally, black communities have struggled to recover financially since the housing crisis in 2008 and black workers have received smaller pay increases over the last 10 years compared with other racial groups.

“We’ve made progress in leveling the playing field for minority homeownership, but the landscape is still more challenging for African Americans,” Chris Herbert, managing director at the Joint Center for Housing Studies, told the Post.

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