Thanks in large part to the housing recovery, U.S. households ended 2015 with their assets at the highest level in a decade. The net worth of U.S. households and nonprofits reached a record $86.8 trillion in the fourth quarter, according to a report that came out last week from the Federal Reserve.
The value of the real estate climbed to $25 trillion, against $9.5 trillion in mortgages. That works out to a total home equity for all Americans of more than $15 trillion.
Wealth climbed by more than $1.6 trillion between the third quarter and the fourth quarter. Remember, these figures are for the end of 2015, so we still don't know what effect the early-year stock-market slide had on overall wealth.