Millennial first-time buyers: Fears vs. expectations

By Kelly Leighton | April 15, 2019 | 2 min. read

Even if they haven’t bought yet, most millennials believe that buying a home is a realistic goal.

According to a recent survey by Northshore Fireplace, 80% of millennials who haven’t purchased a home yet think it is attainable, with 46% planning to purchase in the next few years.

Why are they waiting? Well, according to 45% of millennials, they want their first home to be their dream home. Additionally, 65% report they think they will have to relocate to be able to afford a home, including 41% who said they think they will have to move out of state to be able to afford purchasing a property.

However, at least half of millennials surveyed have less than $2,000 saved for a down payment and want to put down 10% or less for their home down payment. Three-quarters reported they cannot afford to purchase a home right now. On average, millennials estimate their first home will cost around $218,000.

The biggest fears of potential first-time millennial buyers are paying the mortgage each month, unanticipated maintenance issues, being stuck in one place and upkeep.

Sixty-five percent of millennials said that homeownership is a choice, and not a necessity, and 40% said they believe ownership is a financial burden.

In the survey, reality doesn’t go far from expectation. Of those who own a home, more than half of millennial first-time homebuyers paid for their down payment from their own savings, while 14% had help from their parents. Twenty percent relied on their own savings, with some help with mom and dad. Thirty percent of buyers said they chose a home in a different area to be able to afford it.

Of those first-time buyers, 15% had regrets. The top regrets reported were buying too soon, maintenance issues, buying a home that wasn’t large enough and concerns about their small down payment and making their mortgage payments.

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