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  • Writer's pictureMathieu Powell

Do Millennials Want to Own Their Own Home?

The short answer is, of course they do.

Despite the non-committal, live for now and work less stereotypes millennials have, surveys show adults aged 22 to 34 are more eager to own a home than older Canadians are. Indeed, most millennials would love to own a place of their own.

Currently, young married couples in which both partners work own homes at a rate close to or above historical norms for their demographic. Even single employed millennials are slightly more likely to own a home than their older counterparts.

Millennial Home Ownership

If this is true, why is Millennial homeownership rate at a historic low? The answer is that millennials are getting married later in life with the median age of first marriage currently sitting at 30.4 for men and 28.6 for women. That makes it a lot harder to put together a down payment for a home – especially in cities like Victoria where housing is hardly affordable.

Valuing Homes

There's good evidence that home ownership is more important to Millennials than it is to Gen Xers or Boomers. Newswire published a recent Royal Lepage survey demonstrating 60 per cent of Canadian millennials, people aged 26 to 41, who do not currently own a home believe they will one day. Interestingly, 52 per cent say they would have to relocate to achieve home ownership.

Affordability in Victoria BC

The “affordability index” compares home prices to average incomes. A value of 100 means that a family with the median income has exactly enough income to qualify for a mortgage on a median-priced home with a 20 percent down payment. An index above 100 means a family has more than enough income to qualify for a mortgage loan on a median-priced home, and levels below 100 that they do not have enough income to qualify.

When looking at this ratio, Victoria is the least affordable mid-size city to purchase in. Calgary, Ottawa, Saskatoon and even Montreal are dramatically easier places to pick up a home than Victoria.

Indeed, Demographia International places Victoria as the 16th most unaffordable city in the world. That’s astonishing.

The graph shows condominium affordability is within reach and is stable, which makes sense seeing as there are many more condos being built than homes. And while some Millennials are raising their kids in condos, the delayed ability to purchase a family home MIGHT have something to do with their lower birth rate.

According to Global News, 1 in 5 Canadian millennials are delaying having children due to financial concerns.

We’re interested in hearing from Millennials about home ownership. Is this something you aspire to? Does home ownership affect your decision to have kids?

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