Homie – Meaning, Origin and Usage

One of the most commonly used slang terms of the century happens to be one that means friendship. That’s right, we are taking a deep dive into just what it means when someone calls you their homie.

This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this expression.


The term homie is a slang term for the word friend. It is used as a close term of endearment between people who live in your area. It is very common to hear gang members use the term homey, which refers to other members of their set.

Being a close friend would make you a person’s homie.

Homie is now considered mainstream and is used loosely to mean friend, even when the relationship is not close. It is an urban word with roots in the culture of Hip Hop and Latin America. It can also be used to refer to friends when they are not with you as opposed to an address. In this case, the meaning becomes linked possessive pronoun.

Example Usage

“My homie is on the way over”.

“My homie always has my back”.

“I am hanging out with my homies”.

“Just because you grew up together doesn’t make you homies”.

“What’s up homie? ”

“Me and the homies are just chillin’ on the block”.

Giving prop’s to my homey down south.


The word homie became commonly used in the 1900s. The original wording was homegirl and homeboy. Both were used to mean friend or close companion. These early forms of the term have been around since the 1800s but were modernized in the 1900s. Around 1960, both homeboy, homegirl, and homies became popular.

The term is actually homey, but the spelling of the work changes depending on which area of the country it is used. In the US, the word homey is closely linked to Latinx communities and POC hip-hop communities. Homey in the Latinx community is mainly used by gang members, however, in African American communities it is used by youth as well as by street gang members. The terms started being used in both ethnic groups and mainstream groups in the mid-2000s as pop and hip hop music gained popularity.

Phrases Similar to Homie

  • Buddy
  • Friend
  • Ride or Die
  • Bestie
  • My 242
  • Bro
  • My niggaz

Phrases opposite to Homie

  • Playa
  • Wanker
  • Clout chaser

What is The Correct Saying?

  • My homey.
  • My homies.
  • My friend.

Ways People May Incorrectly Say Homie

Those who are not aware of the real meaning of the word may assume the word is another saying for home. Using the phrase to refer to a domicile is completely inaccurate and will likely result in looks of amusement or pure confusion.

  • My homies are not that close to me.
  • Time to give the homies a call to see if they remember me.
  • What’s good homey?
  • We are heading out to see different homies.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Homie

There are many ways to use the term, but in every instance, it should refer to a close friend. It is a casual and rendering form of address among both youth and urban POC adults.

  • The homeys on the block are always there to support me.
  • I am planning on getting some drinks and spending the holiday with my homeys.
  • My homey called me to tell me what was going on.
  • If you don’t have my back, you are not my homey.

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