Homeownership “Unattainable”: 1 In 4 Americans Putting Off Buying A Home Indefinitely

Housing affordability is a bigger deal to Americans than the possibility of a recession, according to a new survey by Personal Capital.

The survey found that 1 in 4 people have decided to put off buying a home “indefinitely.” Rising mortgage interest rates were the number one concern of respondents, despite the fact that more than 75% said they expect a recession within two years.

Gen Z was the generation most likely to say homebuying isn’t currently an option for them, and nearly a quarter called homeownership “unattainable.”

Gen Zers overwhelmingly want to own their own homes, with 59% identifying homeownership as a sign of success. But many are worried they may never be able to afford a home if prices continue rising as they have in the last two years.

“Non-homeowners cite insufficient income, high home prices, and not being able to afford a down payment or closing costs as the most common barriers to becoming a homeowner,” Bankrate.com’s chief financial analyst, Greg McBride, said.

“High, and rising, home prices can contribute to the feelings of not having enough income or savings accumulated to buy a house.”

They’re so pessimistic that they’re actually hoping for a housing market crash.

In a survey, 84% of Zoomers said they are hoping for a market crash because they believe it will help them buy their first home.

Millennials responded more positively than Zoomers, with only 18% calling homeownership unattainable.

They’re famously willing to buy homes in unconventional ways to save money, including auctions and co-buying with friends, family, and even strangers.

Gen X and Boomers were the most likely to say they weren’t interested in buying a home at all, with 44% of Boomers responding this way.

But while respondents feel that homeownership is important, they also noted that it’s only “one of several ways to build wealth,” rather than the best way.

These respondents believe that putting their money into retirement or savings accounts, stocks, bonds, and cryptocurrency is as valuable for building wealth as buying a home.

“The past few months have shown how quickly the housing market can shift,” said JJ Lester, Certified Financial Planner and a Real Estate Specialist at Personal Capital.

“That’s why the decision to purchase real estate often relies more on your lifestyle goals than trying to time the market.”

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Are you offering unique options for buyers as the market normalizes? If so, let us know. Email Editor Kimberley Haas at [email protected].