Millennials, more than any other generation, are having to make significant financial sacrifices in their own lives just to be able to afford a roof over their heads.
That’s according to a report recently released by data firm CoreLogic, which analyzed how different generations of Americans are grappling with the affordable housing crisis continuing to plague many American cities. While the report begins by stating that home price increases as a whole are now on a slow trend of slowing down, it’s still difficult for many people to afford housing without having to make cutbacks in their personal lives.
“The cost of either buying or renting in expensive markets puts a significant strain on most consumers,” CoreLogic CEO Frank Martell stated in a press release. “Our research tells us that about 74 percent of millennials, the single largest cohort of homebuyers, now report having to cut back on other categories of spending to afford their housing costs.”
Additionally, more than six out of every ten renters in high-price housing markets told CoreLogic that their housing costs were unaffordable.
During the first quarter of 2019, CoreLogic together with RTi Research of Norwalk, Connecticut, conducted an extensive survey measuring consumer-housing sentiment in high-priced markets. In all, 62 percent of residents in high-priced markets acknowledged that housing in these markets was unaffordable, compared to only 11 percent of respondents across all markets surveyed last year. Nearly three quarters of renters (71 percent) in these high-priced markets felt their housing costs were unaffordable, compared to just 16 percent of renters across all markets last year.
Included in the report is a graph showing what kinds of sacrifices millennials (and 40% of older generations) are having to make in order to pay for high housing costs. Nearly half of millennials, and roughly 25% of older generations, say they’re cutting back on eating meals out, and on entertainment spending, like going to the movies, concerts, or sporting events. 37% of millennials say they’re taking fewer or less expensive vacations, and roughly one in five millennials say they’ve had to take on a second job.
Perhaps most tellingly, only 26% of millennials say they don’t have to make any of the sacrifices listed, but 60% of older people say they haven’t had to make sacrifices to pay for housing.
To be clear, the housing crisis isn’t just limited to those renting apartments. As Grit Post reported earlier this week, a study of home prices in more than 400 counties shows that in 71% of those counties, median-priced homes are unaffordable for the average worker. In Kings County, New York — which houses Brooklyn — a worker making the average annual salary would need to save up 115% of their annual take-home pay in order to buy a home.
Tom Cahill is a contributor for Grit Post who covers political and economic news. He lives in Bend, Oregon. Send him an email at tom DOT v DOT cahill AT gmail DOT com.