Millennials became homeowners at the fastest pace of their lifetimes between 2019 and 2021, causing the median age of U.S. homebuyers to fall for the first time in nearly a decade, according to The Washington Post. In 2022, however, that trend shifted as rising prices, falling inventory, and surging mortgage rates made home purchases increasingly unattainable for first-time buyers.
After falling in 2021 for the first time in nine years, the median homebuyer age soared to 53 in 2022, the highest on record. After making major strides to keep pace with older generations in the race toward homeownership, millennials lagged behind in 2022, sending the share of homes purchased by first-time buyers from 34 to 26 percent.
“First-time and younger buyers in 2021 still faced increasing home prices, but we did not see mortgage rates climb to the same level that we have in 2022,” said Brandi Snowden, director of member and consumer research at NAR.
According to Snowden, already high prices, low housing inventory and rapidly rising mortgage rates in 2022 “may have caused would-be buyers to delay homeownership.”