Gen Y’s Home-Buying Power Stretches

Millennials are behind the majority of mortgages today, and their borrowing decisions are being driven by factors other generations are not.

According to a new® report, millennials are accounting for 42 percent of all home loans today—the biggest slice—but compared to their counterparts, their down payments are smaller, as well as their spend.

Average Down Payment (Dec. 2018): 8.8%
Median Price: $238,000
Originations (Share): 42%

Generation X
Average Down Payment (Dec. 2018): 11.9%
Median Price: $289,000
Originations (Share): 40%

Baby Boomers
Average Down Payment (Dec. 2018): 17.7%
Median Price: $264,000
Originations (Share): 17%

Affordability is their driving force, the report shows. Unlike other generations who’ve been able to bump up down payments to offset prices—and buy in cities with costlier housing, but more job opportunities—millennials are borrowing higher loans, and congregating where there are jobs and more practical prices. According to the report, this includes:

  1. Buffalo, N.Y.
  2. Pittsburgh, Pa.
  3. Milwaukee, Wis.
  4. Cincinnati, Ohio
  5. Columbus, Ohio

In these cities, more than half of home loans are to millennials, the report shows.

“Millennials are getting older, with better jobs and deeper pockets, allowing them to expand their collective purchase power, and hence, their footprint in the market,” explains Javier Vivas, director of Economic Research at “The stereotype that millennials primarily choose to buy homes and live in large metro areas isn’t the reality. Results show millennials’ expansion is more heavily conditioned by affordability than in prior years, so their eyes are set on less traditional secondary markets where homes and jobs are now available and plentiful.”

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