First-Time Buyers Skip Starter Homes For Larger Houses They’ll Keep For Years

September 19, 2016

The idea of a starter home — a smaller, simpler house in a more affordable neighborhood — isn’t as appealing to first-time buyers anymore.

NerdWallet reports that first-timers are buying larger homes and are intending on staying put. While buyers used to upgrade after five years in a starter home, buyers today plan to keep their first house for more than a decade.

Stagnant wages, rising home prices and tight housing inventory are skewing the population of buyers toward higher earners — and they’re buying bigger homes. In fact, in 2013, first-time buyers purchased homes with an average 1,845 square feet, while the average home in the U.S. is just 1,819 square feet, according to Romem’s analysis of data from the Census Bureau’s American Housing Survey.

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