May 26, 2024


More millennials are choosing to buy a home, even if it means they’re doing it alone.

Forty-two percent of millennials, aged 28 to 43, have purchased at least one home by themselves, according to a new Bankrate study published Thursday. That’s significantly higher than older generations: 34% of Gen Xers and 22% of baby boomers said they bought a home alone, according to the survey.

GenX is defined as being between the ages of 44 and 59, and baby boomers are those aged 60 to 78.

The difference is “likely due to a shift in generational norms,” said Bankrate analyst Alex Gailey. “Younger Americans are partnering or marrying later today than in prior generations, but many still want to become homeowners.”

Overall, 59% of U.S. homeowners have bought a home with a spouse or domestic partner, while 30% have purchased it by themselves.

More than half of millennials are homeowners as of 2022, according to Apartment List’s latest millennial homeownership report. But owning a home has never felt more out of reach, particularly for younger generations.

Renters’ belief in ever owning a home fell to a record low of 40.1% as of February, according to a recent New York Federal Reserve survey. This pessimism is in large part thanks to a combination of high home prices and mortgage rates, and low housing inventory, which has put considerable strain on the home buying market.

The divvying up of a home — especially one they’re buying — is not very popular among millennials, with just a small percentage saying they’ve purchased a home with friends, spouses or relatives. But they’re still more likely to do so than their older counterparts.

Read more: ‘Fractional home ownership’ wants to fix real estate’s woes. Could it work?

“Purchasing a home has felt out of reach for many would-be buyers, especially first-time buyers who do not have existing home equity to leverage, because of rising home prices, high mortgage rates and a shortage of available homes,” said Gailey. “The lack of affordable housing has forced many young buyers to be more flexible in their approach to the housing market and consider creative solutions, such as purchasing a home with a friend or family member.”

Of all the generations, baby boomers were the most likely to have bought a home with a domestic partner or spouse, with 70% of them saying so. That’s compared with 56% of Gen Xers and 47% of millennials.

The financial services firm’s results are based on online surveys administered to 2,408 U.S. adults, of which 1,270 were homeowners, between April 15 and 17.



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