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Was it Easier for Baby Boomers To Buy a House?

Homeownership is still desirable, but it’s not nearly as sacred as previous generations.

(PR worldpropertyjournal) –  As platforms like Airbnb and Homeaway have risen to prominence over the past decade, they’ve created a ripple effect in the way young homeowners regard their property. In particular, many homeowners have become willing to rent out part or all of their home to generate additional income.

According to a Realtor.com study, an increasing number of younger homeowners are open to the idea of renting out some or all of their residence as a way of generating extra cash flow and/or helping to pay down their ballooning mortgage debt. The survey suggests that 32 percent of homeowners are experimenting with a variety of approaches to earning additional income via their property. This includes renting out a spare room full-time, renting their house when they’re away on vacation, and finding a roommate.

An impressive 85 percent of homeowners say they’d consider building onto their home in order to create rentable square footage. Top reasons for renting out part or all of their home include:To earn extra income to save; To get extra spending money; To lower the cost of monthly expenses; To offset major home expenses (such as a mortgage); To cover the cost of a family vacation. 

In addition to renting out square footage, Some people are using creative tactics like renting out a pool and/or renting a garage or parking space.

The fact that nearly half of homeowners are okay with renting their home indicates a much larger shift in attitudes toward home ownership. If you zoom out and look at the bigger picture, you’ll see that times are changing.

Here are several big trends that millennials are leading:

  • Renting over buying. In 1981, 35 percent of properties were owner-occupied. Today, that number has dropped to just 22 percent (leaving more than three-quarters of properties as rentals). These statistics show today’s millennials are much more open to the idea of renting.
  • Non-traditional home sales. The vast majority of homes that are sold use a real estate agent who places the property on the MLS. Many homeowners are turning to cash home buyers. This is especially common in hot markets where homeowners want to be able to move quickly to another property.
  • Smaller houses. For many decades, the square footage of homes increased. There’s been a noticeable jump in the number of homes with smaller footprints. The square footage of new builds is declining and buyers are much more interested in convenience features (like smart-home technology and outdoor living).
  • Return of the townhouse. As the price on single-family homes rises, we’ve seen an increase in the appeal of townhouses. They typically cost less, offer more conveniences, and are usually located in more favorable areas of town. These are all huge advantages for buyers who don’t want the hassle and cost of maintaining a large home.
  • Rise of flex spaces. Today’s homeowners aren’t nearly as concerned about the number of bedrooms in a home as they are interested in the potential for flex spaces. This trend is underscored by the rise in work-from-home professionals who need rooms that can double as bedroom and office. 

Homeownership is still desirable, but it’s not nearly as sacred as previous generations have treated it. It’s clear that millennials and younger adults are more interested in independence, flexibility, and a relatively stress-free experience. It remains to be seen what sort of impact this will have on long-term housing trends. (PR worldpropertyjournal) 

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