Millennials value homeownership above other life milestones

by Steve Randall10 Oct 2018

Millennials want to own their own homes and rank it the most important priority apart from being able to retire.

A new survey from Bank of America shows that 72% of 23-40 year olds say homeownership is their top priority, with retirement at 80%. Marriage (50%) and having children (44%) are far lower on the list.

Millennials see owning a home as a sign of personal success (53%), financial success (45%), maturity and acting like an adult (47%), and independence (36%).

“Younger generations tell us that owning a home has become a milestone that defines their success, and it’s promising to see them aspiring to homeownership,” said D. Steve Boland, head of Consumer Lending at Bank of America.

Among renters, there’s an almost even split between those who think renting will be more expensive than homeownership long term, even though 69% believe their rent will increase each year or every other year.

However, the dream of homeownership is being challenged by saving for a down payment (44%) or affording the home they want (23%).

Almost half think they need a 20% down payment, 43% say they will need private mortgage insurance without a 20% down payment, and almost a quarter think they need a perfect credit score to qualify for a mortgage.

More than half of first time buyers team up
Almost two in five respondents plan to buy in the next 2-5 years with 57% of all first-time buyers planning to buy with a spouse or partner and 37% saying they plan to purchase their first home solo.

Ninety percent of first-time buyers would rather pay more for their preferred location than be in a less desirable location with lower home prices and 45%are looking to stay within their current neighborhood, city, county or township/school district, while just one in five is planning to buy out of state.


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