What millennial buyers really think about home ownership today
Buying a house has, until now, been an integral part of growing up. It is, undoubtedly, a big commitment. Whilst renting gives more flexibility, buying a property implies settling down. This is something millennials seem to have delayed in recent years. Yet, delayed does not mean they have completely derailed the option. Still, the question remains, who are these millennials and are they really affecting home ownership rates?
Who are they?
Millennials are those of us who were born sometime between the mid-1990s to the early 2000s; practically, those who reached adulthood in the beginning of this millennium. Researchers are finding this generation has a different outlook on home ownership and what is considered to be long-term investment.
Are millennials even thinking of owning a home?
A quick skim through various real estate sales would give us an idea. One will immediately notice the high prices of property, both for sale or rent. With the average wage in Malta being around €17,000 p.a. (Trading Economics, 2016), people can only afford so much. If you find a home which is reasonably priced, you’ll most probably find out that it has already been sold by the time you call for information. This leads us to believe that people are indeed looking to buy homes, but are very careful on how much to spend.
How do they look for homes?
Millennials, also known as Generation Y, tend to rely more and more on technology. Most would rather receive a text than a phone call. Why talk when you can text? Others rely on technology to search for real estate and would rather house-hunt through tons of websites or apps before contacting a real estate agent. They like having the information at their fingertips, which is ultimately faster and more efficient to their needs. In fact, Zanzi offers property owners a very efficient system where they can check the activity log of their own properties, thus knowing how many people viewed their property. They can also manage their property online as well as boosting it to the top of the list for more viewings.
Is home ownership the way to go?
In Malta, home ownership has been considered to be a smart investment ever since homes were being built. It was the practical and safe decision to make. If you didn’t live in the house yourself, you could always rent it out to someone else until you could eventually move into it.
With prices for buying or renting property in Malta rising to their limits, people are thinking it twice before finalizing their decision. Home ownership levels are, in fact, changing.
After reaching a high of 81.8% in 2013, home ownership declined again, slowly moving down to 80% in 2015 (Trading Economics, 2016). This drop in home ownership levels could be related to the fact that many are choosing to stay at home longer, delaying life choices like marriage and parenthood, eventually buying a home when they’re ready to settle down.
Give us the real facts!
Millennials are not easily fooled into buying a home. Most know exactly what they want and what they can afford. All they need is help with interpreting the information. They appreciate guidance when it comes to understanding the costs involved in making changes to a house, be they structural or simply in appliances or furniture.
With all this in mind, it is clear to see millennials are indeed planning on purchasing a home, yet they are not in any hurry to do so. They do not approach home ownership like their predecessors, they are simply taking their time to make the big decision.
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