Numerous studies have found that owner-occupiers live longer and stay healthier than renters. Epidemiologists often view housing tenure as a proxy for economic circumstances rather than as having directly health-promoting or damaging effects. Housing researchers, on the other hand, have tended to study physical and psychosocial aspects of housing that might directly impact upon health. Linking these two literatures, we analyzed nearly 3,000 postal questionnaires from a stratified random sample of Scottish adults. In particular, we examined differences between owners and social renters that might explain observed tenure differences in health. Personal characteristics explained much of the difference between owners and social renters, but some dwelling and neighborhood characteristics also played a role.