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Gen X is winning the housing market right now, find out why

Gen X is winning the housing market right now

  • Home prices have reached an all-time high.
  • Point2 says a median priced home in 100 of America’s largest counties is unaffordable for most Americans.
  • All generations are struggling to afford a home right now, but Gen X stands the best chance.

Home prices have reached an all-time high and it’s making homeownership unaffordable for almost everyone, according to a new study.

Point2, a real estate database, calculated how much Americans could afford to set aside for a down payment on a home in 100 of the country’s largest counties. Assuming each buyer wished to spend no more than 30% of their income on housing costs, the data shows that in a majority of these counties, the median priced home is unaffordable for most boomers, millennials and Gen Zers.

“Given the discrepancy between home price growth and income growth, it’s no wonder the dream of owning a home seems just that for many generations – a dream,” Andra Hopulele, Point2 senior writer, told Insider.

Housing affordability has plummeted as a lack of housing supply has increased buyer competition and driven prices to new highs. As the market tightens, buyers are having a difficult time finding affordable options. While boomers still own the majority of homes in America, the market’s current dynamics are taking a toll on everyone — regardless of age. However, in this game of supply and demand, Gen X homebuyers are starting to come out on top.

Housing affordability falls for everyone, but Gen X is in the best position

Of all generations, Gen X, or people born between 1965 and 1980, stands the best chance at affording homeownership, according to Point2. The group is the only generation that can afford homes above the median price in 70 of the most populous US counties. Researchers say the range of affordable property prices for the demographic ranges from $225,201 in Hidalgo County, Texas, to almost six times that amount in San Mateo County, California: nearly $1.3 million

“This generation can afford the highest-value homes in most counties,” researchers wrote. “No other generation even comes close, as Millennials afford homes above the median price in only 34 counties, while Baby Boomers can do so in 11.”

Boomers account for more than 40% of homes owned in the US, but their purchasing power is tanking.

According to Point2, the typical boomer can’t afford a home above the median price in 89 of America’s 100 largest counties. Of all markets, Boomers are having the most difficulty in New York as the difference between the median home price and what a homebuyer older than 65 can comfortably afford is a stunning $1 million.

“Given the disparity between the median income of a person over 65 who lives in New York and the local median home price, home affordability is becoming increasingly problematic for Baby Boomers,” analysts wrote.

Millennials, many of whom are first-time buyers, are also facing their share of affordability woes. Point2 says they can’t afford a median priced home in 66 of the country’s largest counties. However, the company’s data does show that in three large markets – San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara — Millennials living and working in the area can afford homes above $1 million.

“Given their net worth and income, Millennials in 34 counties could afford homes above the local median — which is more than their Gen Z counterparts could even hope for,” researchers wrote.

Gen Zers are experiencing the most challenges to homeownership. This is because their available net worth leaves them little room to afford housing. Point2’s data shows that Gen Z Buyers can’t afford a median-priced home in any of the 100 largest US counties. To be sure, the oldest Gen Zers are just 25 this year, well below the median age of the first-time home buyer at 45, according to NAR.

“From as much as $1 million to a little more than $40,000, the price difference between the median home and the home that Gen Zers can actually afford opens a not-so-metaphorical precipice between young people and their homeownership dreams,” researchers wrote.

Read the original article on Business Insider