Millennials can be surprisingly traditional as revealed by a recent survey. Todays would-be homeowners, the millennial buyers, are mostly renting but over half plan to buy within the next two years. A large percentage of the millennial generation believes that owning a home is essential for achieving their version of the American dream.
Millennials make up the population segment most likely to have a major effect on the property market in the immediate future. Real estate professionals, the agents, investors and builders, will need to cater to the demographic. But as millennial buyers come on board, it won’t pay to neglect the rest of the market.
While the ideals of these millennial buyers may be traditional, how they go about buying a home won’t be. Their style and expectations are very different from boomers and gen X. Millennials value a more minimalist and mobile lifestyle. The size of a home doesn’t matter as much as convenience: walking and cycling are big parts of the millennial lifestyle – many aren’t interested in even owning a car for example.
Millennial buyers are reaching the age when past generations have traditionally become first time home-owners and property investors. The youngest segment of the millennial generation is probably still a few years away from home ownership. For now, renting is preferable as they move around and value mobility.
Real estate professionals producing marketing campaigns, branding and developments will have to be aware of the likes and dislikes of this buying segment. But Millennials are only part of the picture; the remainder of the market is made up of more traditional customers who cannot be ignored.
When asked about their homeownership plans, millennials say they wouldn’t know how to buy a property. A small segment of the generation is scared of the market, while others are taking on property investment with gusto and enthusiasm.
Seasoned real estate professionals will spot these new trends are not so different from earlier generations at this stage of life. Millennial buyers will eventually move into the market in a big way as their priorities mature.
In the meanwhile, there are areas where millennial and mainstream criteria collide. These are the sweet spots that real estate professionals need to target when marketing across the multi-generational customers that make up today’s market.
Many real estate people may find they are best positioned for success by placing themselves where millennial tendencies collide with other trends. The aging boomer generation is downsizing, looking for proximity to healthcare facilities and services. Moving to be near family or moving into multi-generational housing are all options appealing to the grey tsunami.
Every decade since the 60s has had its own brand of rebellion; earlier generations went through these periods too. The only significant change is millennials can do it on the internet.