If you want a tiny taste of the vitriol incited by the very idea that many millennials eschew home-buying, take a gander at the comments section of a tiny piece Curbed Philly ran in the beginning of April. "Let 'em rent," says one guest. "It gives them flexibility to move where they want, do what they want and not have to worry about all the "bells & whistles" that come with something so pointless." And on the opposing side, another guest warns: "Millennials, you'll be kicking yourselves in 10 years for not getting in now, while Philly real estate is still relatively cheap and rates are still at 3.5%."
All the feels in reaction to the simple fact that the Philly millennial population "can neither afford houses nor want to buy them." In a trend that's the consternation of real estate professionals city-wide (and nation-wide), many people under 40 still prefer to rent, rather than own a home. "They're scared," said Halley Yankanich, 24, a senior account executive for a Center City pharmaceuticals ad agency. "The job market isn't all that steady, and they can't afford a down payment anyway."
Rent.com recently conducted a survey of 1,000 U.S. millennial renters to find out how they are planning their next move. And guess what: Millennials got their mind on their money and money on their minds: more than half (57%) rank affordability as the most important factor when choosing an apartment. However, it seems that the millennial heart and head are at odds: Despite their desire for affordable apartments above all else, 22% of millennials are spending up to 40% of their annual income on rent, and 12% are spending up to 50% of their annual income on their digs.
· Despite what people may think, Millennials do like to put down roots: more than half (55%) are willing to spend up to $150 more per month in order to stay in an apartment they love, and nearly one in four respondents (24%) are willing to shell out an additional $400 a month, just to keep their pad.
· Give us the posh life: more than one-in-four, (27%) of millennials put apartment size and/or building amenities at the top of their apartment wish list. Because yes, I do want a roof deck with a pool AND a dog park.
· Millennials are a bunch of heart-breakers: 43% of millennials surveyed said they moved away from their college towns for job opportunities or greater job potential, and only 21% said they moved for a significant other.
· Millennials get by with a little help from their friends: 70% of millennial renters have at least one roommate, no matter their annual income, 24% are turning to their parents for additional support, and an entire 6% depend on the kindness of others.
Some may cite the 2007 housing market crash as a reason millennials tend to choose renting over buying. Nope. 85% of millennial renters either do not care, are indifferent toward, or are unaware of the 2007 housing market crash. Despite this, they are still not interested in purchasing a home any time soon. In fact, 78% of millennial renters are planning on staying renters with their next move.
· Millennials not buying it [Curbed Philly]
· Millennials an untapped, and often unwilling, homebuying market [Philly.com]
· Rooftop dog-walking area for the Fairmount at Brewerytown [Curbed.com]