Amenities in Poor Households America
Chart 1 shows ownership of property and consumer durables among poor households based on data from the 2009 American Housing Survey, which was conducted by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Census Bureau, and the 2009 Residential Energy Consumption Survey, which was conducted by the U.S. Department of Energy. These surveys show that:
- 80 percent of poor households have air conditioning. By contrast, in 1970, only 36 percent of the U.S. population enjoyed the air conditioning.
- 92 percent of poor households have a microwave.
- Nearly three-fourths have a car or truck, and 31 percent have two or more cars or trucks.
- Nearly two-thirds have cable or satellite TV.
- Two-thirds have at least one DVD player, and 70 percent have a VCR.
- Half have a personal computer, and one in seven have two or more computers.
- More than half of poor families with children have a video game system, such as an Xbox or PlayStation.
- 43 percent have Internet service.
- 40 percent have an automatic dishwasher.
- One-third have a wide-screen plasma or LCD TV.
- Around one-fourth have a digital video recorder, such as a TiVo.
- More than half have a cell phone.