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Us Millennials, We do Home Ownership Differently

As different trends begin to emerge, like the tiny house movement, strategically Airbnb-ing, millennials have become incredibly practical when it comes to home buying/renovating. According to a recent survey by Better Homes and Gardens, millennials may dream of cooking in their newly renovated kitchen with an unneeded middle bar/island, with all new pots and pans and silverware, but will not debilitate themselves financially in order to achieve these accessories.

On top of this, the survey also found that millennials, especially those who are new to their living conditions (living in the space for 5 years or less), are not opposed to DIY projects or waiting out for the project to have its best possible price to meet their home goals.

“These first time Millennial homeowners are focused on building equity – not debt,” explained Jill Waage, editorial director of digital content and products at Better Homes and Gardens. “They are strong believers in being able to afford their dreams as they achieve them and not over stretch themselves.”

In lieu of paying a high price for top dollar products and renovations, younger home buyers are allowing their budgets dictate their plans.

Findings from the survey revealed that “firsts,” or first time homeowners, are more likely to live in older, lower-end homes that are in need of fixing up. Fifty percent of Millennials ages 22-39 said their first home was in need of some degree of repair when they moved in.

Consumer Affairs reports that members of the generation also tend to take their time when it comes to tackling home improvement projects. The group aims to accomplish home goals as they progress through life and become more financially stable, according to the study.

If calling a professional to take care of a home improvement project isn’t in the budget, Millennials often don’t hesitate to roll up their sleeves. Three out of four “firsts” do some degree of DIY in their home, the survey found.

“Millennials and Millennial ‘firsts’ are paving their own paths in homeownership based on their own budgets, timeline and needs,” explained Waage. “These ‘firsts’ are replacing big-budget homes and expensive renovations with patience, frugalness and practicality.”

Millennials may be financially conscious, but they’re not lacking in home improvement aspirations. Their goals, however, are often modest and able to be accomplished in a budget-friendly fashion.

Projects that add value to their home — such as painting walls, installing tile, and installing light fixtures — are among the top interior DIY improvements.

Ultimately, 64% of Millennial “firsts” desire a renovated kitchen, 60% desire renovated bathrooms, and 59% have dreams of a renovated deck/patio space. On average, they would like mid-sized homes around 2116 square feet, according to the survey.

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