Millennials Eye Softer Housing Market

Almost half of Australian millennial homebuyers say Covid-19 has put home-ownership more easily within reach, with a third focused on buying a home within the next two years, according to a ING report.

The homeownership report found that 50 per cent of all millennial home-buyers would live on the city fringes and outer suburbs—45km or more from the city—if it would help towards securing a home sooner.

While 46 per cent said Covid-19 had made home-ownership more achievable and 32 per cent said they would buy within the next one to two years.

ING’s head of home loans Julie-Anne Bosich says the homeownership report suggests that many haven't given up on the goal of owning a home despite major market headwinds.

“They’re just re-thinking how they go about getting there and re-evaluating where they might want to live,” Bosich said.

Related: Millennials Making Big Move to Regions

Describing millennials as those born between 1981 and 1996, the report says that more than one in five plan to buy a smaller property in a cheaper area and rent it out until they can afford the forever home.

The research, which was conducted by YouGov in June and backed by ING, takes a sample of 1057 prospective Australian home buyers over the age of 18.

It also notes that one in 10 (9 per cent) consider buying a property with a friend or family member to get into the market quicker.

The report comes as REA Group announced it had recorded an increase in buyer appetite for new homes on Tuesday, citing government incentives and historic low borrowing costs.

REA’s Cameron Kusher said enquiries to developers on the realestate.com.au platform had “surged to record levels” up 62.8 per cent in June, following a 53.9 per cent hike in May.

Looking specifically at email enquiry on the realestate platform, enquiry levels increased 28.5 per cent in June. While land estate enquiries recorded the largest jump over the month, up 93 per cent, followed by a 29.4 per cent increase in apartment leads, according to Kusher.

ING’s homeownership report says financial concerns remain the number one barrier for prospective first home buyers, with 69 per cent of those surveyed, saying the pandemic had forced them to take control over finances, and 42 per cent able to save while in lockdown.

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