Millennial spending affecting housing market

20- and- 30- somethings are spending their money differently than their parents did

The Shot of the Day - downtown Portland, submitted by Mike on May 7, 2013
The Shot of the Day - downtown Portland, submitted by Mike on May 7, 2013

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) — Millennial’s daily spending habits are affecting the real estate market, a panel hosted by the Center for Real Estate set out to discuss on Wednesday.

The panel at the 10th Annual Real Estate Conference, titled Millennials: A New Force in Real Estate, discussed the way the demographic will be hugely influential on the housing market, much like their baby boomer parents. Their spending trends shape the way the housing market works and its influence over a city’s economy.

Millennials, as 20- and- 30-year-olds are often called, are more focused on accessibility and community, changing the way they invest in real estate. They also have higher debt due to student loans.

Portland State University student Alex Joyce, studying in the Master of Real Estate Developer program, says he came to Portland 9 years ago from Florida to have an authentic urban experience and “to be somewhere where I could bike to work, to walk to places I wanted to shop at and eat and drink.”

He also explained that for many people his age, student loans make buying a home unrealistic. “With 20, 30, 40 to 80 thousand dollars in debt, and when you’re already saddled with the equivalent of a mortgage, it’s difficult to get qualified for a home.”

So far, Generation Y seems focused on a lifestyle with less cars and more interest in city dwelling. Trends also show that they are spending more money on entertainment and food and less on investing in property. The previous generation bought homes earlier in life.

“It’s very important to understand the preferences of the millennial, because they’re going to be in the drivers seat,” Joyce explains.

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