Skip to comments.The End of Ownership: Why Aren't Young People Buying More Houses?
Posted on 03/01/2012 6:02:37 AM PST by Haiku Guy
Richer couples! Cheaper mortgages! Millions of unwanted houses! Despite all this, young home owners declined for 30 years, even before the Great Recession. Here's how the American Dream shrank.
When older generations wonder what's the matter with Millennials, they often judge their younger cohorts against such financial and social benchmarks as finding a job, getting married, and buying a home. These observations often come wrapped in weak science -- "blame Facebook for their indolence" -- or dripping with judgment -- "blame their parents for making them weak." The science is weak, but the observations are true. Fewer young people are finding jobs. Fewer young people are getting married. Fewer young people are buying homes.
Between 1980 and 2000, the share of late-twenty-somethings owning homes had declined from 43% to 38%. The share of early-thirty-something home owners slipped from 61% to 55% in that time. After the boom and bust were over, both rates kept falling. The rate of young people getting their first mortgage between 2009 and 2011 was chopped in half from just 10 years ago, according to a recent study from the Federal Reserve.
It's no wonder that in an environment that punishes the long-term faithful, more young people are planning month to month.
(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...
Housing is a dead end. Skyrocketing property taxes to pay for the union thugs, higher and higher insurance premiums, etc etc.
Energy prices are skyrocketing.
Etc. Young people are learning how the new rules work and want no part of it.
RE: The End of Ownership: Why Aren’t Young People Buying More Houses?
1) Because Youth Unemployment is the highest its been in decades.
2) Many young college grads are struggling to pay their college debt.
3) Government is ARTIFICIALLY HOLDING UP home prices, thus, distorting market prices, preventing them from reaching their natural market level.
that looks like 3 pretty good reasons
Agree with you 100% - home ownership allows government to put the shackles on you. Parking fees, wheel taxes, special assessments, property tax hikes.
In Milwaukee, the housing market has been crushed in part by runaway property taxes. An extra $200 a month in property taxes means almost $40,000 of principle that can’t be paid on a mortgage.
Most people budget on total monthly payment, so seemingly small hikes in government overhead have huge impacts on the market and housing “investments.”
I would agree, home ownership isn’t what it used to be. It used to be an investment, now, it’s pure loss on the balance sheet. With the ever shrinking liberty that comes with home ownership, the benefits aren’t there.
But, there is a societal factor. Younger people have been groomed to be good commies. The would gladly accept a government cooperative type shelter.
The previous generation established certain benchmark requirements for what constituted the Good Life.
You had to have a House.
You had to have a Car.
You had to have a College Education.
You had to have a Family.
The government saw that the people all really, really wanted these things, and moved in to profit from this demand.
If you want a House, you have to pay an every increasing Property Tax. You have to pay a Transaction Fee. You have to pay for Permits and Services and Education and a million other things. When you buy a house, you are strapping yourself into the Government Money Milking Machine, and who wants to be strapped to that?
If you want a Car, you have to pay a Registration Fee. You have to pay Plate Renewal Fee. You have to pay the Gasoline Tax. If it is a nice car, you have to pay the Gas Guzzler Tax. You have to buy insurance and pay taxes on that. You have to buy a certain kind of car with a certain kind of engine. When you buy a car, the Government puts it’s hand into your pocket, and they never take it out.
If you want a College Education, you have to pay inflated tuitions, registration fees, book fees, access fees. To pay the tuition and fees, you have to submit to loans, and pay the interest. You have to pay for bloated college staffs, where Administrators outnumber the Faculty. You have to buy books at inflated prices, food at inflated prices, housing at inflated prices and supplies at inflated prices. When you buy a College Education, you commit yourself to a lifetime of expenses that far outstrips the increased earning potential the education represents.
If you want to have a Family, you have to commit yourself to take on all of these expenses for yourself and for the next generation. Meanwhile, the irresponsible are subsidized at every turn, and you pick up the cost of that, as well.
Is it any wonder that young people are refusing to adopt these things. We have priced them out of the market.
4) The X-box works better in the basement where it is darker and the bigscreen seems brighter.
All those things lead to the American ideal of independence.
This is one thing the left cannot stand - individual independence.
You can’t control independent people.
If you make the costs of the American Dream Package high enough, and make the rewards of the Sociental Leech Package good enough, young people will make the rational decision to opt out of productive society and go on the dole.
This is a false assumption. True, mortgage rates right now are at an all time low, but ony for thse who meet underwriting guidelines that are historically stringent. A late student loan payment or an unfavorable LTV, and you don't qualify. Underwritng standards even in the 1990's were more relaxed probably due to comopetition. You had many sources of potential funding for mortgages that filled niches - say if you had one late student loan payment, but otherwise qualified. Now, all you have is government programs. You can't argue with city hall, if you don't qualify. Once you have tried, you end up asking, "Who is John Gault?"
The more I think about it, the more I am committed to working for the rest of my life to provide whatever subsidies my children require to make sure their costs of being a productive and responsible citizen are achievable. This is a personal decision for my own family. I cannot and will not subidize the rest of society.
If that means picking up their housing down payment, property tax bill, paying for their car insurance, children’s tuition and whatever fees and taxes as yet undreamed of, that is what I can do.
Who is John Gault?
(5) Why bother buying a house when you have to get rid of it in the divorce 3 years after getting married?
Also, transient pre-adulthood now increasingly includes grad school after a few years and no settling down into marriage until around age 30 for most professionally tracked young professionals.
Because most of the young don’t have stable jobs.
Well, when property taxes, city ordinances and grass care are reasons to steal property in cities, why would there be incentive?
It started with Judge Souter on landgrabs.
You’re correct. But there’s an even more profound reason they aren’t buying homes. Taxes, as you’ve pointed out, are one major consideration; they recognize that with the property tax burden no one ever actually “owns” a home; even if the mortgage is paid off, rent must still be paid to the gov’t.
A bigger reason, in my opinion, is that they’ve seen what their parents have gone through and are going through and want no part of it. And what they’ve seen is specifically this: in the county in which I live and in and around every major urban area in the state, the Feds and the State/County Housing authorities have been and are continuing to build MILLIONS of Section 8, Low income housing projects. Even in this crap economy, as I type, another huge project is being built in the northern part of our county.
And these projects follow a pattern: they are always constructed on major streets next door to middle and upper middle income residential subdivisions. There are two effects immediately felt; 1) the middle and upper middle income people can’t leave their neighborhoods without passing the Section 8 housing and 2) crime in the area immediately soars. Long term, i.e. 9 to 12 months after construction of the Section 8 housing, homes in the adjacent neighborhoods can’t be sold and end up being sold to investment buyers who turn the homes into Section 8 housing; the thing so few know is that Rental Homes have become an industry because under the programs administered by HUD, if you place your house up with HUD, they’ll pay the rent regardless of whether its occupied or not!
What we’ve experienced is that entire swaths of the county have been economically devestated by this phenomenon. My daughter who is an EMT responded two nights ago to a shooting/drive by just blocks where she grew up; the house we were forced to sell because of the growing crime problem. What I’ve seen is that her 20/30 something generation can’t even return to their high schools for re-unions because the schools are now in high crime areas.
With that example of Gov’t induced property value destruction on a scale this massive, the last thing these people want to do is sink a large sum of money into residential housing. Would anyone want to buy a home in Beirut/Bagdhad/Somalia?
I'm pretty sure that even if you rent, part of your rent goes to pay for property taxes that are charged to your landlord. Thus, ALL housing costs go up, not just for those who own houses.
This is another thing the left cannot stand - prayer.
Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers. J. Sidlow Baxgter
This is another thing the left cannot stand - prayer.
Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers. J. Sidlow Baxter
Government, gov...gov, more gov; thousands upon thousands of laws, new regulations springing up daily, new nanny state "guidelines" on what we should eat or worse yet, schools trying to tell us what we can feed our kids...I can keep going, but that is just preaching to the choir. Anyone who believes we are "free" is sadly mistaken. Its not long now before border fences WILL be constructed; to keep us IN!
Ah, so we’ve exposed a greater truth.
It’s not independence they hate,
it’s dependence on anything but THEM.
My son and his wife (23/21) are agressively looking for a house to buy. Pre-qualified for some outrageous sum (both have good jobs), have a down payment, but they’re smart enough to be looking for a good deal.
He’s resisted buying until now because the market has continued to plunge, but it looks like things have taken a little upswing lately. One house they’re extremely interested in has been vacant for 4 years (owner/with no survivors or estate died), but BOA won’t move to sell it. Some homes the banks are they’re evidently holding back.
His opinion is that even for a normal sized apartment, his rent will be higher than his mortgage including taxes/ins. and an apartment just doesn’t afford the quality of life as a home. Rents have not gone down much around here.
We’re in Florida so there are “steals” on the market...his problem seems to be the ones he’s interested in go on the market in the AM and are off the market by the evening when he gets off work and has time to meet the realtor. Investor buying is still pretty heavy in our area.
1) In today’s mobile economy, owning a home ties you to one location, and prevents career advancement.
Let’s face it, the reason many people remain unemployed today is that they can’t sell their home and move to another part of the country that has jobs. The days when corporations would finance an employee’s move from one part of the country to another is long gone.
2) Homes are no longer seen as a secure, sure-bet investment.
Housing values crashed in the ‘30s, they crashed in the ‘70s, and they crashed in 2008. About every 40 years there is a housing value crash. People (especially young people) no longer see a home as an investment vehicle to save up for their old age.
“Home ownership allows government to put the shackles on you. Parking fees, wheel taxes, special assessments, property tax hikes.”
Exactly!...They have you by the balls when they know you have a mortgage
(2) Very few builders in the last thirty years have specialized in "starter homes" (1000-1200 sq ft, 2-3 bedrooms) which is what prudent first-time buyers should be buying.
uhh....because we are going back to the days where you had to save up a downpayment of between 10 and 20 percent, and you generally don’t have that kind of scratch in your bank account at age 23?
It’s nowhere near the bottom for homeowners. I’m thinking I should buy a vacation home or get a large RV at the lake or ocean and just stay there. To hell with it all.
...and you can turn the volume up without bothering Mom & Dad.
owning anything simple is the equivalent of printing a bullseye on your back.
Seems like a lot of bashing on this thread -
1. All Real Estate is local.
2. All Real Estate decisions are personal -
In other word s- a sum of individual decisions in local markets
re rent vs own - I live in one of the best neighborhoods in my state. After taxes - for way less than rent. This house - for the rent of a very average house in a “rental house” type neighborhood.
Plus - my rent won’t go up for the next 20 years.
SO - maybe that is the problem. The starter home market - is weak, and not gaining equity. So - why buy one? Right now - all that starter house promises is risk, with quesitonable return. If it could be bought - and the buyer thought he would get my hous ein 10 yers - he would do it. But - why buy - without the dividend?
I think - also - in my perspective - modern people are VERY image conscious. They may feel many of the starter homes are “beneath them” - not trophy houses. They - truly - aren’t like us - hoping to find any beater they could fix up, live in for 10 years, and move on - they NEED - a nice house. Their expectation seems to be - to get my house - without the “questionable” house first.
Two words -— Property Taxes
Back in the 60’s and ‘70’s we called that “blockbusting”.
But is is all part of a plan. It is of a piece with the outrageous energy prices that Energy Secretary Chu talked about early in the administration. They plan to make it impossible for people to live in a nice quiet suburb and commute to a job. They MUST force everyone back into the cities where the combination of social dysfunction, and corrupt and incompetent government has forced every productive person and enterprise out. It is the UN Agenda 21.
Also, it represents the death of the corporate career employment model. Hardly anyone starts in the mill at 18 anymore and works 45 years to collect a gold watch and a pension. (That’s for government workers.) Companies today look at workers as ‘human capital’ - they have no loyalty to the employees, who are fired at will and in mass numbers to meet narrow short-term financial targets. In return they get none back. Entire career fields and occupations rise and die in a matter of a few years (Look at IT). People continually have to re-invent themselves and move to where the jobs and opportunities are. We’ve become 21st century nomads. Being tied to a mortgage and property isn’t workable in this environment.
Finally, it is also the death of the nuclear family. Almost half of all births are now outside of wedlock. That is the number one guarantor of poverty and dependence. Government subsidizes it to the tune of hundreds of billions each year. For the most part, you can’t own a home and get the full boat welfare package, which I’ve heard calculated at about $60,000 a year. Four bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths and a nice yard are for dad, mom and 2.8 kids. that model of the family is just about dead for half of the population.
But only if all taxes go up in parallel. If one taxing region (city, school district, county or state) decides to jack up taxes, it is far easier to move if you rent and leave the landlord stuck with the decreased property value caused by higher taxes.
You are quite correct on all points. What makes this so difficult for so many to understand is that it is such a long term view, even for the Liberal Elite Social Engineer Planning types. Let me offer you a perspective on that.
The goal is to force the population back into the cities, for a myriad of reasons, (and yes, it is spelled out in Agenda 21 as “Sustainable Development”).
In order to do that, they’ve had to “empty” the cities because for the most part, the cities contain and are immediately surrounded by sub-standard low rise single family homes and old style, Section 8 Housing projects. The cities have to be emptied to give way to re-development. So, they build Section 8 thoughout the Burbs, evict the Section 8 types and literally bus them to the new housing in the Burbs. Once the cities are emptied, they begin the process of re-devloping the cities with 1) new Section 8 high rise apartments and 2) Private Developer built Lofts/Townhouse/High Rise apts. to attract the childless hipster young professionals and the city loving retirees.
At the same time, the Suburbs and their school districts are literally destroyed, rendering them uninhabitable by anyone with a job/family/children. And.....the topper on this is that they force the price of gas sky high so the people with jobs in the cities are forced to surrender the Suburban lifestyle and move into Apts./Townhouse/Loft living in the cities.
Its a beautiful plan, (in their eyes) except for one, small, nagging detail. The employers are leaving the cities for a myriad of reasons, but primarily 1) to avoid sky high taxes and 2) to locate “between” Urban areas near Rail Lines/Interstate Highways. Illinois is the prime example of this. They do that for 2 reasons: 1) by locating away from the urban areas, they can attract bright, young, family minded types who can go to good schools and 2) Rail access is becoming increasingly important as fuel prices go to high.
The end result: Chicago and in the extreme example, Portland.
In todays economy, renting is commonsense. You have to be able to move in this economy to find work.
This is a simple equation.
Parents starting out in the 1950’s and ‘60’s started poor, but with jobs that had tracks for promotion with greater income, job security, and gradual, methodical economic improvement. Importantly, they had a timetable that gave them a large window to have and raise children.
However, college graduates today are starting out deeply in debt. Until that debt is paid, they have to delay their timetable for marriage, children, and home ownership. If they delay too long, they are soon “out of the window” for these things.
Add to that in the 1950s and ‘60’s, home prices were based on the cost of the land and construction, as well as some profit for the contractors and subcontrators. But today, home are priced at 3-4 times the value of these things. Home builders expect 100% or more profit from each home they build, far beyond inflation.
Back then, a house that cost $10,000 to build could sell for $17,000 on a 30-year lease. Today a house that costs $30,000 to build can have a price of $300,000 or more.
Just what a centralized big brother federal government does not want!....A lot of people with no permanent address and montly mortgage....No free spirits and free thinkers allowed!
We live in a small town in Pa. Not much going for it except low crime, lots of churches, gun-friendly, and very low taxes. Our house is over 100 years old, over 2000sf, and the property tax is $350 a year.
If people would shop around more they’d find affordable homes. The trade-off is, they might not find the job they want, or keep the one they have. So they go on paying 10x, or 20x, what I pay in property tax, to keep the job they need to pay the tax...
The problem is that everything that people really want has been larded up with extraneous expenses, so they can’t afford it anymore. Willie Sutton used to say he robbed banks because that is where the money was. Nowadays, people run universities or charge property tax.
The result is that young people cannot afford to graduate without crushing death, get married, start a family or buy a house. Their decisions to forgo these things are perfectly rational, because the costs of doing all of these things is just so damn high.
crushing death = crushing debt
Damn You Autocorrect!
One thing you are forgetting is the cost of regulation that has ballooned over the last 40 years. The first thing you need to do before subdividing property is to have the government inspectors come in, do the A2survey, the Environmental impact study, the soil type engineering survey, and in some areas the school use impact study -- That's right, permits can be declined because the town determines that Property taxes on that house will not cover the school costs of the house.
it's to the point that in order to operate in certain areas that contractors and developers need to budget for "Unforeseen Incidentals" (AKA bribes) and all of these costs need to be included in the cost of the house.
Today, home ownership is no longer an investment. You can rent a condo for 1/3 of what it was 4 years ago.
We don’t own our homes or our property, we rent both from the tax man and insurance company.
All of these factors are passed on to renters but renters are accepting less and less, smaller and smaller to just stay even.
The home in the suburbs will eventually become a relic of the past for the most part. The collective block apartment will become the norm. Less is becoming the norm for young people. They have learned to live in a fish bowl much easier than we have.
Good one, but today a house that cost thirty thousand to build is called a mobile home. It cost 45 dollars a finished foot to build a home years ago. That is the big problem today, home prices have dropped but building materials has not.
Why buy a house when you know Obama is going to tax the hell out of you to support redistribution of wealth? FUBO!
Jobs for young people are increasingly rare in a Communist, post-industrial economy.
I don't know. Could he be a friend of John Galt?