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On the Homefront: Military Service and the American Dream

A study by the Urban Institute revealed that 78.2% of veteran households were homeowners in 2017, which is 14% more than the total population and more than 16% higher than the non-military population. 

Active-duty servicemen, according to the report, are mobile and have led the homeownership to be 42.7% in 2017.

However, active servicemen over the age of 55 have the highest homeownership rate at 87%. This is followed by 84% for veterans over the age of 55. Both are higher than the total homeownership rate of 77%. 

Active servicemen between the ages of 18 and 34 have the lowest homeownership rate at 28%. The homeownership rate for the total population between the age of 18 and 34 is just 34%. Veterans within that age group have a homeownership rate of 44%. 

White veterans have the highest homeownership rates, with 46% of active servicemen owning homes and 82% of veterans being homeowners. Those numbers drop to 35% and 63% for African-American homeowners. 

Active servicemen do have the highest median income at $71,000, which is followed by veterans at $66,800. The average income for non-military members is $58,000. 

Urban Institute also states that Fayetteville, North Carolina, has the highest share of VA loans at 60% with the military share of the labor force at 17%. Clarksville, Tennessee-Kentucky, is a close second with a VA loan share of 50% with a military labor force share of 13%. 

The Urban Institute reported late last year that there were more than 19.2 million veterans living in across the nation. 

Urban Institute found that Tampa, Florida, was named the best place for veterans to live, possessing a healthy economy, job opportunities, and a reliable quality of life. 

Tampa came in at No. 8 in employment, No. 12 in the economy, and No. 6 in quality of life. Florida also had the top-two markets for the highest veteran income growth—Orlando and Hialeah.

Joining Tampa at the top of the list were the metros Austin, Texas; Orlando; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Scottsdale, Arizona. 

About Author: Mike Albanese

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mike Albanese has worked for news publications since 2011 in Texas and Colorado. He has built a portfolio of more than 1,000 articles, covering city government, police and crime, business, sports, and is experienced in crafting engaging features and enterprise pieces. He spent time as the sports editor for the "Pilot Point Post-Signal," and has covered the DFW Metroplex for several years. He has also assisted with sports coverage and editing duties with the "Dallas Morning News" and "Denton Record-Chronicle" over the past several years.

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