Dreams Of Homeownership Falls For First Time In Five Years

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Trulia’s 2017 Housing Outlook explores Millennial buyers, rising mortgage rates, and the markets to watch

December 07, 2016

Photo: SanjibLemar/Wikimedia Commons

As the Great Recession and housing crisis drifted further into the past, more and more Americans rekindled dreams of buying a home. Then the 2016 presidential election happened.

Trulia released its 2017 housing outlook report, titled Discouraged Democrats, Revived Republicans, and Middling Millennials. Based on two recent surveys (one just before and one right after the election) of 2,000 Americans, the report found that fewer people consider homeownership a part of their American Dream. The share dipped from 75 percent last year to 72 percent this year, both before and after the election. The rate had increased each year since 2011.

As for Millennials, the percentage of respondents who considered a house as a part of their dream went from 80 percent in 2015, to 76 right before the election, to 72 percent after. Also, among people age 18 to 34 that are planning to buy a home, 72 percent said they would wait until the end of 2018 to do so. Ralph McLaughlin, Trulia’s chief economist and author of the study, wrote that 2017 is expected to be a weak year for Millennial homebuying.

According to the report, rising mortgage rates will cool homebuying in California and the Northeast, low inventory will bottom out, and house price growth in the nation’s heartland will catch up to the coasts.

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