A search of two prominent real estate websites in the greater Los Angeles area reveals that Latino surnames are the most common among current homeowners. Asian surnames are most common among luxury real estate owners in the region.
The surveys were conducted on Point2 Homes and Property Shark by LA Weekly. According to the Point2 Homes website, “all current owners” in the greater L.A. region are, based on surnames, mostly Hispanic. A list showing the top 20 surnames for current homeowners, home buyers in the last three years, and luxury home buyers shows that the surname Lee is first on the list of current homeowners. Surnames Garcia, Lopez, Young, Gonzalez, Hernandez, and Rodriguez are listed in the top 10.
The LA Weekly argues that “all but about three names (arguably) on the Point2 Homes top 20 list of L.A. ‘luxury home buyers’ last names are Asian,” making reference to the surnames of Lee and Young. They write that last names Lee and Young are actually Asian-sounding, whereas the site lists them as being English names. They also point out that surnames Smith, Miller, and Johnson are the only non-Asian names on the list.
L.A. County’s population alone contains 4.8 million Hispanic people, according to the Pew Research Center. And this year’s World Cup viewing events in L.A. were also an indicator of that population’s widening impact on the region’s culture.
A spokeswoman for Point2 Homes said that over the last three years, there has been a shift in L.A.’s real estate market “from English home owner names to Hispanic ones” and “to Asian ones” in the “luxury segment,” notes the Weekly.
She said that the same thing has been happening across the United States: “The analysis shows that in the past three years, names of Asian origin like Chen and Wang have become more popular than the names of English or Hispanic origin, for all home price segments [across the nation].”
Chinese nationals have been increasingly buying up properties throughout California. These cash-bought transactions have been driving up inflation, which has some realtors predicting a second housing bubble, which mirrors the 2006-2008 housing crisis, from which the United States economy has just begun recovering.