Is your city a top destination for young homeowners?

by Rachel.Norvell10 Oct 2014
The nation’s youngest adults are predicted to assume a greater share of the housing market during the next few years. According to a recent report by The Demand Institute, millennials will spend $1.6 trillion on home purchases in the next five years – more on a per-person basis than any other generation.

However, the difference between millennials and young adults in previous decades is the unique financial challenges of home ownership today, resulting from graduating into a weak job market with growing student loan debt said Jeremy Burbank, vice president at The Demand Institute and Nielsen.

So, which markets are primed and ready for millennial homebuyers? recently released its Top 10 Fall Markets for Millennial Home Buyers list, which shows despite trends of low inventory, increasing prices and tight lending standards, these markets offer the most opportunity for millennials looking to get into the market in the next few months:
  • Akron, Ohio,
  • Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y.
  • Charleston, W.V.
  • Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Harrisburg-Leabon-Carlislie, Pa.
  • Indianapolis
  • Melbourne-Titusville-Palm Bay, Fla.
  • Memphis, Tenn.
  • Peoria-Pekin, Ill.
  • Syracuse, N.Y.
All the markets included in the list have demonstrated strength in two key areas: housing affordability and increases in inventory. To be featured, local areas had to report a housing affordability index over 240 and a month-over-month or year-over-year increase in inventory.

The National Association of Realtors’ Housing Affordability Index evaluates home prices based on the median household income for each respective area. Leading the list in affordability is Akron, Ohio. The second most-affordable locale is Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y., where people can afford homes three times the median. In third place is Charleston, W.V., where residents earning the median wage in their area can afford a home that is 2.4 times the median.

Each area also had to experience an increase in the number of homes on the market. The market with largest increase in inventory included on the list was Melbourne, Fla., with a 39% increase in inventory compared to last year. The second largest lift in inventory was in Memphis, Tenn., with a 17% year-over-year increase, followed by Charleston, W.V., which increased 7% compared to last year.

"Millennials were hit the hardest by recession layoffs and job shortages, and many are still facing the financial aftermath of the downturn including reduced wages and depleted savings," said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist for "Noy only are first timers more likely to be able to afford homes in these areas, less competition in these markets means they are more likely to have their offers accepted."


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