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First-Time Homebuyers Older, More Often Single

by | Aug 17, 2015

The average first-time homebuyer is about 33, at the front end of the millennial generation

By Jeff Sorg, OnlineEd Blog

hello im a millennial name tagOnlineEd (August 17, 2015) – According to a report just released by  Zillow® analysts, today’s first-time homebuyer is older and more likely to be single than first-time homebuyers in the 1970s and 1980s.

The study also found that Americans are renting for an average of six years before buying their first homes. In the 1970s, they rented for an average of 2.6 years. They’re also spending more of their incomes to buy: 2.6 times their annual income today, versus 1.7 times their annual income in the 1970s. Part of that can be attributed to the housing markets where millennials are moving: more expensive cities on the coasts, where there are growing job markets.

The average first-time homebuyer is about 33, at the front end of the millennial generation. Their median income is $54,340, which is about the same as what first-time homebuyers made in the 1970s, when adjusted for inflation.

In the late 1980s, 52 percent of first-time homebuyers were married. Today, only 40% were married.

“Millennials are delaying all kinds of major life decisions, like getting married and having kids, so it makes sense that they would also delay buying a home,” said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell. “We know millennials value home-ownership and want to buy. The next challenge will be figuring out how they can save for a down payment and qualify for a mortgage, especially while the rental market is so unaffordable all over the country. The last hurdle will be finding a home they like amidst very tight inventory, especially among starter homes.”


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