More first-time home buyers should be entering the market but aren’t

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A new Harvard study concludes that tight credit, not affordability, is keeping first-timers away

August 12, 2014

There could be many more first-time home buyers, despite tight credit standards and student debt, according to a study by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. More than half of the renters in many U.S. metro areas could handle homeownership financially, the study found. One thing that could be putting homeownership out of reach for young renters is  a tight credit market, especially for graduates and young professionals starting their careers with significant debt. The conclusion is that either renters are opting out of the American dream, or are not buying for reasons beyond affordability. Another possible factor: competition from corporations buying up houses.

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