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Renters Cite Affordability as the Main Obstacle to Homeownership

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Renters Cite Affordability as the Main Obstacle to Homeownership

Prospective buyers are retreating to the rental market as housing prices continue to soar

April 7, 2022
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Nearly one third of all U.S. renters cited a lack of local housing affordability as their main reason for renting instead of becoming homeowners, and 30% were also unable to save for a down payment, according to a recent Redfin survey. Nearly half (45%) of all renters said that debt from credit cards, student loans, medical bills, etc. has prevented them from buying a home, and 23% are hindered by financial setbacks from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

While the majority of renters planning to move were upgrading to a better home or seeking out greater affordability, a large share of those relocating were doing so for reasons out of their control. Eleven percent of respondents said their landlord is selling, 10% said that they plan to move because their current unit doesn’t have adequate heat, hot water, or electricity, and 6% are relocating because their landlord is terminating their lease. 

Nearly as many respondents (44%) said home prices are too high where they would want to buy, and 38% said they didn’t have enough income to save money to buy a home. 

Meanwhile, almost one-quarter (23%) of renters said pandemic-related setbacks like loss of a job or wages have kept them from buying, and 19% said high rental prices are a factor. 

Just 12% of renters said financial obstacles are not a factor keeping them from buying a home. 

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