NEW YORK — Are you a twenty-something who’s ready to buy your own place? Consider yourself lucky. More than two-thirds of millennials don’t think they’re financially stable enough to own a home, a new study finds.
Researchers on behalf of Homes.com, a leading online real estate portal, recently polled 1,000 American millennials, looking to better understand their perspective on owning property.
The eye-popping statistic from their findings: 70% of those surveyed believed that they would struggle to qualify for a mortgage, perhaps explaining lowered expectations for subsequent ownership. Why the bleak outlook? More than half of the respondents (52%) said that inadequate savings would make a down payment all but impossible, while numerous others indicated that debt, such as student loans, would dash any remaining hope. The survey showed a fifth of respondents blame money still owed for schooling on why they continue to rent.
Meanwhile, nearly half of respondents (48%) had no reason to believe their situation would change for the better in the coming three years, meaning that they would only soon own property through a stroke of luck (e.g., inheritance or lottery winnings). In fact, 9% of those surveyed have already thrown in the towel on the idea of ever being a homeowner.
Although homeownership was considered largely unattainable, just one in six men and one in ten women had no reservations with remaining in a rental property. Combine this with the fact that 74% of respondents associated homeownership with stability, and it becomes clearer that property ownership hasn’t lost its luster.
“With student loans and credit challenges, home ownership certainly appears more difficult for today’s millennials,” acknowledges a Homes.com spokesperson in a press release, “but low rates and an improving economy also put a home purchase within reach of many, with millennials making up the largest group on homebuyers in 2017.”
To be sure, 68% of respondents said that they intend to own a home at some point, even if that day comes in the distant future.
Much like older generations, millennials prioritize living in a desirable neighborhood, with a plurality (34%) calling it their most important purchasing factor.
“Quality of schools, lifestyle activities, and proximity to work” are among the biggest considerations when choosing a location, the press release notes.