Homeownership is the biggest priority for millennials, according to the latest Bank of America Insights Report. A little over 70 percent of those surveyed said homeownership is their top priority, outranking traveling (61 percent), getting married (50 percent) and having children (44 percent).
“This fall’s report finds that millennials are redefining life’s priorities by placing homeownership above nearly all other key milestones, including marriage,” D. Steve Boland, head of consumer lending at Bank of America said in the report. “Millennials equate homeownership with personal and financial success, and it’s encouraging to see this generation aspire to homeownership.”
However, renters were split between renting or buying. The age-old debate found 51 percent of renters believed renting is just as or less expensive than buying a home. But those that believed renting is more expensive were in the minority. While both sides are split, nearly seven in 10 said their rent will continue to rise each year or every other year. Nearly half of renters said 30 percent of their monthly income goes to rent.
The report also found over half of renters disliked rising rental costs and felt like they were throwing away money. Forty-four percent of renters said they did not have enough money saved for a down payment to purchase a home.
Many renters also believed other common homebuying myths. About half still believed a 20 percent down payment is required to buy a home, and that they would have to pay private mortgage insurance if they cannot pay the 20 percent.
However, many millennials are still looking for their own place. The report found an even split between those who wanted a starter home or a forever home. Over three-fourths said they planned to update or renovate their homes as many first-time buyers felt the look and feel of a home isn’t permanent. Nearly 10 percent said they planned on gutting it entirely.
Of course, buyers alike wanted to be in their preferred location. Nine in 10 said they wanted to be in their preferred location. Potential homebuyers wanted to stay in the same city, or at the very least, in the same county or township. However, some are willing to move. Nearly one in five said they were willing to move to a new city or different state.
Regardless of their location preferences, homebuyers were motivated by the same thing: money. Those that are looking to buy their home were motivated by having enough money saved or having a higher salary. More than half said having enough money saved was their biggest priority. A little less than 45 percent cited having a high salary was also their motivation.