Affordable Homeownership Strategies for Gen Z
The American Dream has always included the desire to own a home. It represents stability, independence, and having a place to call your own. But, with higher mortgage rates and rising home prices, making that dream a reality for Gen Z, the "Zoomers" born between 1997 and 2012, can be difficult.
However, with some strategic planning and resourcefulness, you can still achieve your goal of owning your first home today.
Investigate Down Payment Assistance Options
It can be difficult to save for a home when prices are rising all around you. If you've been struggling to save enough money for a down payment, it's worth looking into the various down payment assistance programs that are available. These programs can significantly reduce the upfront costs of purchasing a home.
There are far more options available than you may realize. There are over 2,000 programs available to assist prospective homebuyers with down payments and closing costs, according to Down Payment Resource.
If you are eligible for one of these programs, you may not need to save as much money for a down payment. A local real estate agent can assist you in researching these programs in your area, making it much easier to realize your dream of becoming a homeowner.
To save money, consider living with relatives.
Even with the down payment assistance programs available, there are ways to save if you still need a little more time. Many astute Zoomers have made the strategic decision to live with relatives in order to accelerate their savings goals.
According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), approximately 30% of Gen Z homebuyers move directly from a relative's home to their own.
You can significantly reduce your monthly expenses by sharing living costs such as mortgage payments, utility bills, and even grocery expenses. This frees up more of your income to pay down debt, improve your credit score, and reach your down payment goal in less time. All of this can help bring homeownership one step closer to reality. According to Clare Trapasso, Executive News Editor at Realtor.com:
“Faced with ongoing housing affordability issues . . . we're seeing parents and children becoming roommates again in later years as the 'kids' save up to purchase their own place . . ."
The Path to Ownership
It's a good idea to get some help along the way when you're on the path to becoming a homeowner, and one of your best resources on this journey as a young homebuyer is a trusted real estate agent, who will guide you through the process of buying a home and help you find one you can afford.
The path to homeownership may not be easy for Gen Z, but it is still possible; with the right strategies, you can make your dream of owning a home a reality.