Homeownership is a big part of the American self-image. That accounts for the unusual support the U.S. government provides for it. This includes subsidies of about $150 billion a year in tax deductions on mortgage interest and property taxes. Additionally, the U.S. employs huge programs to keep interest rates low by reducing the risks taken on by mortgage lenders. Many countries have higher rates of homeownership; few underwrite it to the same extent.