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Millennials are Buying Their First Homes, and Here’s What They Want

Millennials are Buying Their First Homes, and Here's What They Want

Millennials are Buying Their First Homes, and Here’s What They Want

Authorities disagree on the exact birth years of the Millennial generation: for example, Pew Research defines Millennials as being born between 1981-1997, the US Census Bureau claims 1982-2000, and the National Association of Realtors says 1980-1995.

However, what all these same sources agree upon is that the Millennials are the largest and most powerful demographic force in North America.

In the United States specifically, Millennials account for a quarter of the entire population with a total of 83.1 million people in the demographic. This is a group that makes up the next generation of investors, continues to struggle with mounting student debt, thinks about money differently, and is now buying homes for the first time.

Marketers in all industries have tried to nail down the preferences of Millennials for some time. Millennials have made things especially more difficult for the real estate industry, as they have delayed common life milestones such as marriage, having children, and home ownership. It is only over the last few years, as Millennials have started to buy homes in significant numbers, that the industry has truly understood what the group wants to see in a home.

Millennial home buyers make up 68% of all first-time home buyers right now, and here’s their average profile: 29 years old, a median income of $76,900, and a typical home purchase (median) of $189,900 for a 1,720 sq. ft home. Of these buyers, 84% believe a home to be a good investment.

Where do Millennials want to buy? About half of the cohort (49%) wants to buy in the suburbs, while 21% would prefer to buy in an urban area. In terms of choosing a specific neighborhood, the most-cited factors affecting Millennials’ decisions were the quality of neighborhood (75%), convenience of getting to job (74%), affordability of home (58%), proximity to friends and family (49%), and quality of the school district (44%).

Today, 32% of all home purchases are made by Millennials, but the reality is that many are still holding off on buying. The major reason for that is student debt, which 54% cited as the biggest obstacle to home ownership. In fact, about one-quarter of all Millennials still live with their parents.

Other reasons cited for not owning a home yet? They include: excessive debt, rising rents, slowing wage growth, tight-lending environment, can’t find home in desired price range, increased college enrollment, and delayed marriage/children.

Original graphic by: UpNest

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