Across the country, many cities are experiencing a complete decline in homeownership, as it relates to millennials. Since the recession in 2007/2008 it seems young people aren’t too anxious about purchasing their first home.
Baby boomers and past generations question whether buying a home is even a priority anymore. They can see that millennials are just fine with living with their parents, but why is the ultimate question. Is it a matter of priority, safety, or are millennials just flat out broke?
After speaking with several millennial families and recent college graduates the truth is ALL THE ABOVE. Right now, student loans are at an ultimate high. While college graduates are in debt anywhere from $34,000 to hundreds of thousands of dollars in student loans, it’s safe to say their bank accounts can not afford to factor in the lifestyle of a homeowner.
To them, being a homeowner isn’t as important as chasing financial freedom. According to CNBC, last year about 46% of millennials had less than $1000 in their savings. This tells us that even the majority of working, young adults are living paycheck to paycheck at minimum.
Not only are they saving less and less, as the world changes, it seems perspectives of life are becoming new. Millennials are taking a different approach when it comes to house shopping. They would rather pay $1800 a month for a rented condo than to buy it at $500,000. It seems more practical, less responsibility, and in hopes of moving, less stressful.
This brings an interesting point to my attention because if millennials aren’t saving up to buy homes, what will that trigger for the market itself? It has also been said that baby boomers who were expected to downsize in retirement years, instead are keeping their homes. What would be the effects?
How do we now increase the excitement for homeownership today? How do we encourage young people to do what has always been done? When was it that the value of owning a home went down?
Since it seems that their funds are extremely tied up, due to what was meant to put them ahead, how do we teach and initiate true life savings?
Is it a matter of financial education? Would it be worth teaching millennials the importance of owning a home? Is owning a home what it use to be or is it just for status?
As a 28 year old single mother, who recently graduated from college, I feel the concern from both sides. For me, owning a “starter home” isn’t the first thing on my priority list, but investing in property, that can create revenue surely is. Yet, eliminating student loans and credit restoration is the first task at hand.
I personally believe the teaching of how property could work for you would be of interest to this generation. As millennials, we like to see and calculate ROI, rather than investing in what will ultimately be another set of bills out of our check.
There’s no question that we need more knowledge about the perks of buying a home young.
-LaShawnda S. Wilkins (@speaklifeshawnie)