Overall prices are now just 2% below the peak reached in July 2006.
While economists expected the homeownership rate to begin edging up this year, the rate fell to a 51-year low of 62.9% in the second quarter.
The rate could fall to 58% or lower by 2050, according to a recent prediction by housing experts Arthur Acolin of the University of Southern California.
Long-term declines could erase gains made by middle-class Americans since World War II. Owning a home provides protection against rising rents and has been a key component of retirement saving and wealth creation.