Housing in the Central Valley is changing. But not necessarily for the better.

The Central Valley is slowly becoming a society of renters.

New numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau show that many counties have seen double-digit growth in renter-occupied households and only modest gains in homeownership — if not single-digit declines since 2011.

In the period between 2011 and 2017, the number of owner-occupied homes in the valley fell by three-tenths of a percentage point, whereas renter-occupied households grew to 103,000, an 11 percent increase, data shows.

It’s perhaps one of the remaining scars left by the Great Recession 10 years ago when the housing boom dropped with a thud. Experts say the trend is not surprising but the consequences could be dire for families in poverty since homeownership is a ticket to creating wealth.

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