Housing is a shelter or dwelling and one of the most fundamental requirements for living. This section focuses on the composition of the housing sector, affordable housing, construction and financing

National Rankings provide data on how New Jersey compares to other states on measures of Housing.

State and Local Reports provide featured analysis of current Housing data within New Jersey and its impact on life in the State as well as the economy.


National Rankings compared to other states, New Jersey ranks...

• 13th in New Housing Units Approved in 2013

October 17, 2014.  New Jersey had 24,209 building permits approved for private housing in 2013.  This was a significant jump from approximately 18,000 approved in 2012.  Fifty-three percent of new units approved were in structures of 5 or mor units, compared to 34% nationally.  Texas led the nation in 2013, with more than 147,000 new units approved. 

  Highest Percentage of Home Mortgage Loans in Foreclosure

August 26, 2014.  As of July 2014, 5.7% of mortgaged homes in New Jersey were in foreclosure.  Although down from 6% in March, this is still the highest in the country.  According to CoreLogic's National Foreclosure Report, this is is due in large part to the state's slow judicial process for foreclosures, which has made it difficult to draw down the inventory of foreclosed homes.  Other states with high foreclosure rates include Florida (4.8%) and New York (4.3%).  Nationally, 1.7% of mortgaged homes were in foreclosure in July, 2014. 

• 10th for Negative Equity

September 24, 2014.  As of the second quarter of 2014, 12.8% of New Jersey home borrowers owed more on their loan than the property was valued at.  This is the 10th highest level of negative equity among all states.  Nevada had the highest level of underwater borrowers, with 23.6% of mortgaged homes owing more than the value of the property.  Texas has the lowest rate with just 2.7% of loans underwater.  Data are from CoreLogic's Quarterly Equity Report. 

• 7th Highest in Households Paying More than 30% of Income to Rent

July 21, 2014.  According to the Census Bureau's American Community Survey for 2008-2014, 53% of New Jersey's rental households paid at least 30% of their income to rent.  This placed the state is 7th place for rent burden using this particualr measure.  Florida was the highest, with 60% of rental households pay 30% of their income to rent.  North Dakotsa had the lowest rent burden at 39%. 

• 12th Lowest Vacancy Rate

July 21, 2014.  According to the Census Bureau's American Community Survey for 2008-2014, just 10.4% of New Jersey's housing units were vacant on average.  This placed the state is 12th place.  Connecticut had the lowest vacany rate, with 8.4% of units vacant.  Maine had the highest vacancy rate at 23.3%.    

 • 5th in Median Gross Rent

April 24, 2014. According to the U.S Census Bureau's American Community Survey for 2012, New Jersey’s median gross rent was $1,148.  This was the fifth highest of any state.  Gross rent equals rent plus an adjustment for the average cost of utilities.

• 4th in Value of Owner-Occupied Housing

July 21, 2014.  According to the Census Bureau's American Community Survey for 2009-2012, the median value of owner-occupied housing in New Jersey was $325,800.  Hawaii had the naton's most valuable housing at $503,100.  West Virginia had the naton's least expensive housing at a median of $98,300.  

• 37th Highest in Rate of Homeownership

July 21, 2014.  With a homeownership rate of 66%, New Jersey ranked 37th among the states for the years 2009-2012.  According the the American Community Survey, West Virginia topped the states, with 74% of occuied units being owner-occupied.  New York had the lowest rate, at 54%. 

• 3rd Highest in Housing Units with No Access to a Car

July 21, 2014.  During 2009-2012, 11.7% of New Jersey housing units had no access to a car.  Only New York and Massachussetts had a higher percentage of units without access to a vehicle. 

• 9th in Size of the Real Estate Sector

June 20, 2014.  In 2013, 56,904 people were employed in New Jersey's in the real estate, rental, and leasing sector.  These individuals earned a collective $3.2 billion.  California led the nation with 257,625 people working in real estate (13% of the national total).   Vermont was last with just over 3,000 real estate workers.  Nationally, people working in real estate earned more than $98 billion. 


State and Local Reports

Costs and Benefits of Residential Energy Efficiency Investments 

Although the new energy code is much more stringent than its predecessor, there remain a variety of options for achieving further improvements on the order of 20% – 30% in residential energy efficiency according to a 2011 report by the Rutgers Center for Green Building. These options are financially attractive even on a pre-tax basis.

The incentives for green home building that are made available to buildings in New Jersey are consistent with the state's mission to promote energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The residential sector accounts for 22.6% or energy use and 36.8% of electricity consumption in the state, and therefore accounts for about 1/3 of its greenhouse gas emissions, see adjacent graph. 

Read the full report


Additional Reports

Joe Tyrell, Foreclosure Numbers Paint Bleak Picture of Garden State, NJ Spotlight, March 4, 2013.

Richard W. Martin, Where Did They Come From and Where Did They Go? Migration Patterns and New Jersey Housing Markets 2009, New Jersey Association of Realtors Governmental Research Foundation, April 2012.

Chris Sturm and Nicole Heater, Preserving Land through Compact Growth: Case Studies of Noncontiguous Clustering in New Jersey, NJ Future, 2012.

Robert Noland, Ph.D., Michael Lahr, Ph.D., and Stephanie Dipetrillo, An Evaluation of Property Values in New Jersey Transit Villages, New Jersey Association of REALATORS Government Research Foundation, February 2011.
Tim Evans, "Built-Out" but Still Growing, NJ Future, 2010.

James Hughes and Joseph Seneca, 2009: The Shape of the “New Normal”, A quarterly report on employment and office markets in Northern and Central New Jersey, Sitar-Rutgers Regional Report, February 2009.

Legal Services of New Jersey, "The Critical Shortage of Affordable Housing in New Jersey: A Brief Overview," June 2003.  



Data from the NJ DataBank may be used with the following acknowledgement:

Source: NJ DataBank (http://njdatabank.newark.rutgers.edu), a project of the School of Public Affairs and Administration, Rutgers University-Campus at Newark