While many people believe that Millennials aren’t buying homes, that’s hardly the case. The truth is that those who are in their mid-thirties (yes, Millennials are now in their thirties) simply have different interests and circumstances that have changed how they approach buying houses. Millennials make up the largest group of home buyers, the National Association of Realtors 2017 Home Buyers and Sellers Generation report shows. Out of this group, two-thirds are first-time buyers, while the remaining 34% are already selling their starter homes.
Why does Forbes consider this group of homebuyers one of the top trends in the real estate industry for 2018? Here are some of the unique ways Millennials are buying homes and how they’re reshaping the overall real estate experience.
They’re Buying Homes Later
Unlike older generations, Millennials weren’t in a rush to purchase their first homes. Some continued to live with their parents through their twenties, while others enjoyed the perks that came with renting. Many prioritized their education, careers, or travels before saving up money to make a down payment on a home.
While a number of Millennials are now purchasing homes, their full impact may not have been felt yet. According to Inc. Magazine, 66% of the Millennials they surveyed aren’t buying a house now, but plan to do so within five years.
Many Millennials don’t see anything wrong with renting, especially while they’re young. They don’t feel the pressure to build up equity in real estate. Those who are busy with their careers also may not have time to handle the maintenance and yard work that comes with owning a home.
They Have a Different Budget/Debt Situation
Millennials are much more conscious of where they stand as far as their debt goes. In 2016, college graduates had an average of $37,172 of student loan debt. While that’s a six percent increase over the 2015 average, it doesn’t mean older Millennials are debt-free. Many aren’t ready to commit to the additional debt that comes with buying a home, especially when the average price of a house is over $200,000.
Many Millennials have waited to make large purchases until they have a stable, established career. Some want to pay down or pay off their student loans first, while others don’t want to ever be in a position where they cannot afford the debts they have.
Many Millennials are concerned about the environment and actively look for ways to reduce their impact on nature. This has led to two trends in Millennial homebuying. The first is that these buyers are looking for locations near public transportation hubs or that don’t require long commutes. They don’t want to use a lot of gas getting to and from work, both to cut down on carbon emissions and to save on costs. Homes that are within walking distance to stores, cafes and restaurants are also a plus.
The other trend real estate agents are seeing is that Millennials don’t just want to save nature, they want to enjoy it. Many want homes that offer outdoor recreation areas or have great views. They want to be able to go outdoors to relax. A house in the suburbs that’s within walking distance to a light rail service is a Millennial dream home.
They Do the Research
Millennials are cautious and won’t commit their hard-earned money until they’re certain that they’ve found the right home for them. That means they’re going to do a lot of research before they even approach a real estate agent. They come to the table knowledgeable about the mortgage process and about what they want in a property.
Millennials also aren’t shy about bringing their parents or other experts on the house hunt with them. Real estate professionals who are used to only dealing with the buyers may suddenly find themselves showing homes to larger groups. Sometimes this is because the parents are contributing to the down payment, while other times it’s because the homebuyers want extra eyes looking for problems or potential issues they can address before signing any paperwork.
They Want the Perfect Home
Millennial homebuyers are picky, and they know what their perfect dream home entails. They come into the house search with a list of must-haves, and few are willing to buy a house that doesn’t meet most, if not all, of the items on that list. They’re looking to buy new houses or at least homes that are move-in ready and don’t require work. Few want project houses or fixer-uppers.
They Use Technology
Millennials have grown up with technology, and they use almost constantly. While older generations may start the home buying process by going to a real estate agent, Millennials are going to begin searching online on their own. They’re not going to consider listings that don’t include photos, and many want to see videos of the property or do a virtual tour as well. Agents who don’t quickly respond to emails are likely to miss out, too. Millennials are also likely to avoid contacting agents who don’t have good online reviews.
Millennials Are Ready to Buy
While they may have waited longer than other generations to start buying real estate, the Millennial generation is now ready to take on the role of homeowner. Many are looking to purchase new homes, which is where Belman Homes comes in. These handcrafted homes can be customized to include everything the homeowner wants, allowing Millennials to create their perfect home.