Social media sparks millennial interest in homebuying

by Claire Brennan

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Of the many factors prompting homeownership, one particular catalyst that encourages millennials to delve into real estate is social media.

In surveys that compare social media’s influence on millennial first-time homebuyers to all first-time homebuyers (of which millennials make up 65 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors), millennials report being influenced by their internet friends’ homebuying habits more often than homebuyers of other generations.

After seeing posts that internet friends bought a home, about 33 percent of millennial first-time homebuyers report reflecting on their own ability to buy a home, compared to 27 percent of all first-time buyers.

Roughly a quarter of the millennials surveyed claim a fear of missing out by not owning a home, and 23 percent report being jealous of their homeowner acquaintances, compared to 21 percent and 16 percent of all surveyed first time buyers, respectively.

Additionally, millennials seem to see homeownership as a step toward adulthood, as almost 25 percent cite owning a home as a sign of “grow[ing] up”, compared to 18 percent of all surveyed first-time buyers.

Surveys conducted by NAR establish millennials as the “most active generation of buyers,” with 36 percent of adults under the age of 35 owning a home.

“I think it’s motivating them to think about homeownership,” D. Steve Boland, head of consumer lending for Bank of America said to USA Today. “Their interest level is high, and it’s driven by what they see.”

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