How Millennials Saved the Housing Market

Millennials are finally growing up.

Im sure youve heard the stories by now. Millennials are stunted, the experts warn. Theyre up to their eyeballs in student loan debt. Theyre having trouble finding good-paying jobs. Heck, most of them are living in their parents basements or crappy apartments.

But heres the thing: many of these generalizations arent true at all. In fact, millennials have grown up just fine. Over the past couple of years, these kids have found good jobs, married, and had children. Some have even bought homes.

In fact, if youre in the real estate business or selling a home, you should thank the younger generation for helping spur demand in your area.

If we turn to the data, we can clearly see how the plight of the millennial homebuyer isnt any different from the rest of us.

Millennials low homeownership rates have encouraged all sorts of gloomy talk about the fate of U.S. real estate. But no age group had enjoyed a boost in homeownership coming out of the recent slump, according to a recent Fannie Mae study. Blaming stunted millennials for a soft real estate market was a mistake since every other demographic was in the same boat.

Until now

Older millennials in their 30s are now one of the new driving forces in homeownership trends. This demographic is partly responsible for finally pushing the homebuilder sector higher a full decade removed from the housing crisis.

This huge shift is just beginning to show up in the data.

Back in September, we saw the largest single-month increase in new home sales since 1992.

New single-family home sales increased a whopping 19%, placing new home sales at their highest level since October 2007.

Its not difficult to figure out whats going on here. Homebuilders need to ramp up production to meet consumer demand after sitting on their hands for the better part of the last decade. Supply is tight. As millennials continue to grow up and jump into the housing market, homebuilders are going to need to catch up.

Of course, we dont even need to pick apart this bucket of data if we just look at a chart of the homebuilders.

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