It’s a Sellers’ Market—but Not for Millennials: Report

Even as homeowners, millennials are drawing the short straw.

According to the 2018 Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends, newly released, millennial sellers—even with the proverbial “upper hand”—are having to change their closing date or cut their list price.

Many, even, have had deals fall apart, against outside stressors and tight timelines—and, the majority of millennial sellers would do over “at least one thing differently” in the process, the report reveals.

Does the struggle mean the tide is turning?

“These seller challenges don’t indicate we’re suddenly in a buyers’ market—we don’t expect market conditions to shift decidedly in favor of buyers until 2020 or later,” says Dr. Svenja Gudell, chief economist at Zillow. “Buyers certainly are starting to balk at the rapid rise in prices, and home values are starting to grow at a less frenetic pace.”

Affordability is a dug-in issue, as well as the inventory shortage, the report shows. Across Gen Z (age 18-22) and millennials, 31 percent of homebuyers ended up living in a place they “hadn’t initially considered” due to affordability concerns and limited options. Sixty percent of millennials, notably, had less than 20 percent as a down payment.

Affordability is a problem for renters, too. According to the report, 52 percent of millennial renters thought about buying a home in their last move; 48 percent, however, do not have $1,000 for an emergency expense at the ready. Moreover, 67 percent moved to a new rental due to an increase in rent—an added crunch on their finances.

Despite the faint findings of a homebuyers’ market, the favor is with sellers today—and, as it goes, buyers will inevitably be in an owners’ position.

“Whether this tilt in the balance is just a pause or the earliest signal of an emerging buyers’ market will determine the extent to which buyers and sellers and their agent partners recalibrate their strategies to adapt,” Gudell says.

“As hectic and stressful as the process can be, most sellers still go on to buy another house, and, if past is prelude, they’ll find themselves back in the market as sellers in another decade.”

For more information, please visit www.zillow.com.

DeVita_Suzanne_60x60Suzanne De Vita is RISMedia’s online news editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at sdevita@rismedia.com. For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

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