Housing Insecurity in the Time of COVID-19

September 23, 2020

Keynote Presentation by William R. Emmons and Lowell R. Ricketts

Presentation slides (PDF)

Will the COVID-19 recession create a housing crisis as severe as that of the Great Recession? Millions of Americans lost their housing in the recession a decade ago and, while this recession is unique, the risk of another severe housing crisis is significant.

In this recorded Zoom presentation, William R. Emmons and Lowell R. Ricketts from the Center for Household Financial Stability at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis discuss the current status of housing insecurity in the Eighth District and nationwide, with a special focus on vulnerable households.

Additional discussion topics include efforts to mitigate the harm facing families at risk of losing their housing today and policies to reduce housing insecurity in the future.

  • (0:00) Introduction by Sydney Diavua, director of the community development engagement team at the St. Louis Fed
  • (1:30) Bill Emmons presents an overview of housing distress during the Great Recession
  • (2:36) Mortgage distress
  • (5:22) Homeownership rates by generation
  • (10:15) Families doubling up
  • (15:33) Lowell Ricketts presents data on the current situation among different demographics
  • (18:50) Housing distress rates of homeowners
  • (22:24) Housing distress rates of renters
  • (27:13) Panel discussion with Teresa Cheeks Wilson and Faith Weekly, community development advisors at the St. Louis Fed
  • (42:10) Q&A session

Additional Resources:

Blog Posts:

Survey Data:

Publications, Reports and Papers:

External Resources:

This popular lecture series addresses key issues and provides the opportunity to ask questions of Fed experts. Views expressed are not necessarily those of the St. Louis Fed or Federal Reserve System.

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