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The Share of Millennials Owning Homes Is Dwindling

Updated: Jun 11, 2022

By Paul Bergeron

April 26, 2022 at 08:07 AM

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This generation’s homeownership rate doesn’t match up with Gen X or Baby Boomers.

For those supporting the American Dream of owning a home, recent data from Apartment List can prove startling.

A new report showed that with each passing year, the share of Millennial renters saying they will never own a home is increasing (now 22 percent)—and post effects from the pandemic are accelerating the trend.

The Millennial homeownership rate stands at 48.6 percent, according to the most recent Census data, more than 20 percentage points lower than the rate for Gen X and almost 30 percentage points lower than Baby Boomers.

Even older Millennials—those who have turned age 40, some 60 percent own homes. At that same point in life, 64 percent of Gen Xers, 68 percent of Baby Boomers and 73 percent of Silents owned homes, according to Apartment List.

Homebuying Involves a Learning Curve

Mary Wolf, Agent with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, tells that today’s Millennials are forging ahead and shaping the industry for the future of real estate.

“With lower down payments, rising inflation, supply chain issues in new construction, and educational debt, an affordability gap cannot go unnoticed,” Wolf said. “Unlike homeowners in the past, with these factors considered, Millennials are purchasing homes now that have efficient use of space for inside and backyards rather than extravagant and larger homes.
“Feeling defeated in this market with little money, some have turned to renting for the foreseeable future. Millennials are transient and technology-driven, while work from home is here to stay.
“However, to appeal to and combat some of these growing issues, it can be through educating in classroom-type settings as early as high school as that would be very helpful.”

Wolf said she takes her new homeowners through a home buying workshop that prepares them for homeownership for over a year.

“The conversation of understanding how to purchase and when used to start in the home. With the lack of knowledge, changing rules and regulations, it now must start in a classroom,” Wolf said.

Build-To-Rent an Alternative to Homeownership

Richard Ross, CEO of Quinn Residences, tells that as home prices and inflation remain at skyrocketing rates, many Millennials are turning to different options for housing, such as build-to-rent communities.

“That still gives them the flexibility and autonomy of a single-family home over multi-family options,” Ross said. “Homeownership is no longer the only way to build wealth as alternative investment options, such as cryptocurrency, are growing in popularity. While millennials are still attracted to living with more space and fenced-in backyards, they no longer have to be strapped to a 30-year mortgage to do so."

Quinn’s Residences’ tenants comprise roughly 30 percent of Millennials.

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