The no. 1 reason why so few Millennials are buying homes in Houston

by Peter Thomas Ricci


For some time now, agents and analysts alike have wondered why so few Millennials are buying homes, but new Census data has provided a remarkably straightforward answer – they’re all living at home with their parents.

Compiled by Time magazine, the Census numbers found that more than a third of Millennials nationwide still live with their parents, as do 33.2 percent of Texas Millennials; sitting on the top of the mountain is New Jersey, where an incredible 46.9 percent of Millennials live at home.

Here is a chart that breaks down the numbers further:

State Share of Millennials Living at Home
New Jersey 46.9%
New York 40.6%
Florida 38.3%
California 38.1%
Pennsylvania 37.1%
Massachusetts 37%
Illinois 36.5%
Michigan 34.9%
Georgia 34.2%
Texas 33.2%

The Millennial trap

So we know why so few Millennials are buying homes, but why are so many of them still living with their parents? A recent study from the Federal Reserve – one that arrived at hauntingly similar conclusions – offers some keen insights.

Focusing on student debt, the Fed found that for every $10,000 increase in student debt per graduate, the share of 25-year-olds living at home rose 2.9 percent. Then, looking at the historical (and historic) rise in student debt, the Fed arrived at its most eye-popping finding – in 2003, there were 25 states where 20 to 30 percent of 25-year-olds lived with their parents; by 2013, all 48 states had such rates of Millennials living at home, and for 12 states, the “parental co-residence rate,” as the Fed calls it, had exceeded 50 percent.

So although the Census data was based on the American Community Survey, and the Fed data was centered on student loan debt, both sources arrived at the same conclusion, which is that huge swaths of the Millennial population are living at home and not buying residences of their own.

Interested in more perspective on student debt and housing? Click here to read our analysis

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