Senior Households’ Net Worth Drops 13%, Still Dominated by Home Equity

Despite a 13% drop in median household wealth between 2005 and 2010, senior households fared much better than other age groups and have the most home equity,  according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Household net worth across all age groups declined 35% in that five-year time span from $102,844 to $66,740. However, excluding home equity, median household net worth actually increased by 8% between 2009 and 2010 to $15,000.

“The overall decline in net worth reflects drops in housing values and stock market indices,” said Census Bureau economist Alfred Gottschalck in a statement.

The 65+ group has a median home equity of about $135,000. The 70-74 age group has the most home equity of any age group, at $140,000.

While senior households were hit with a larger dollar amount loss, they fared better than others percentage-wise.

For 65+ householders, median net worth went from $195,890 to $170,128, compared to 35-and-under households dropping from $8,528 to $5,402.

Losing about $25,000 in net worth is substantial, but it represents a 13% decline for the 65+ crowd compared to 37% for the younger householders.

Excluding home equity, much of senior householders’ net worth is in stocks and mutual fund shares.

Access the Census data here.

Written by Alyssa Gerace

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