Millennials Are Heading to the ‘Burbs, After All

March 10, 2016

Millennials are leaving the city. While many millennials choose to live in urban areas as renters, when they're ready to buy, they're increasingly seeking single-family homes outside of urban areas, according to the 2016 National Association of REALTORS® Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends study.

“The median age of a millennial home buyer is 30 years old, which typically is the time in life where one settles down to marry and raise a family,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “Even if an urban setting is where they’d like to buy their first home, the need for more space at an affordable price is for the most part pushing their search further out. Furthermore, limited inventory in millennials’ price range, minimal entry-level condo construction, and affordability pressures make buying in the city extremely difficult for most young households.”

The percentage of millennials purchasing a home in an urban or central city area fell to 17 percent in this year’s survey – down from 21 percent the year prior. Also, 10 percent of millennials purchased a multifamily home, down from 15 percent a year ago.

Millennials comprise the largest group of recent home buyers – 35 percent which trumps the 31 percent of baby boomers, 26 percent of Gen X buyers, and 9 percent from the Silent Generation, NAR’s survey showed.

When it comes to neighborhood choice, millennials were most influenced by the quality of the neighborhood (63 percent) and convenience to jobs (60 percent). Gen X buyers were most swayed by convenience to schools.

Source: “Millennials More Likely to Buy in Suburban Areas,” RISMedia (March 9, 2016)