Millennials: Insights on their homebuying activities & intentions

Victor Polich
Posted by Victor Polich
Mortgage Banking

When it comes to homebuying, it’s not uncommon to hear that millennials are breaking with the traditions of their parents and grandparents.

Young couple sitting on floor, painting an interior wall; but the woman is using a small paintbrush and paints a symbol of a small blue house on the wall.But according to the recent Bank of the West 2017 Millennial Study, we learned this perception may be misleading. Of the approximately 800 millennials (ages 21-34) we surveyed in January, 60% intend to own homes, despite the fierce competition, rising interest rates, and inventory shortages.

Where do millennials call home?

Our study revealed that 43% of millennials own their homes. However, it is important to point out that only 27% of younger millennials (ages 21-27) own homes in comparison to 56% of older millennials (ages 28-34). Their willingness to purchase a home and settle down in one location is contrary to the perception that millennials are likely to pack up and move to a new city, county, or state at any given time.

And although 41% of millennials are currently renting, many say that they would be willing to purchase in the future. So why are millennials delaying the mortgage application process? According to our survey, some are waiting to get married and start a family, others are saving for the down payment, and some are looking for a competitive interest rate.

We also learned that 15% of millennials live with their parents or family members, and 1% stay with friends. The result that surprised me most: 14% of millennials have no interest in ever owning a home.

Infographic of a house, with different colors corresponding to percentages about where millennials call home.

Resources you may consider

If you’re a millennial looking to purchase when the time is right, I encourage you to review this infographic on 7 keywords to remember. Many items and considerations go into preparing for a first-time home purchase, and concepts outlined in the infographic, such as documentation requirements, are a good starting point.

The following blog posts for basics on the homebuying process may also be worth reviewing:

For additional resources, such as interactive calculators and information about different types of mortgages, visit the mortgage section of Bank of the West’s website.

For more on the survey results, see the full report summary.


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