Family Matters: How Home Buyers are Leveraging Relatives

October 27, 2023 - 3 min read

With the affordability crunch making life difficult for home buyers, prospective borrowers are getting creative.

One way they’re doing this is by leveraging their family members, according to a report by These tactics are helping them save money, split costs and bide their time as they navigate a challenging housing market.

Read on to see the different strategies being used by house hunters to give them a leg up on competition.

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Family ties to homeownership

Necessity is the mother of invention. With the affordability and inventory strains in the housing market, would-be buyers are thinking outside the box in order to become homeowners.

Many are turning to family members to help them get there, according to Among house hunters looking to buy a home in the next year, 51.4% have moved in with their parents or would consider it as a way to save money. That share rises to 62.3% of Gen Z respondents and 53.9% of millennials.

Similarly, 56.2% have or would move in with other family members as well. That bumps up to 62.3% for Gen Z and 58.2% for millennials.

“The challenging market conditions this year are changing buyer behavior in significant ways, driving many more people to explore alternative living situations they may not have considered in the past,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist at

Many of the prospective home buyers in the survey listed family as a main driver of their search. A 28% share of respondents said they’re looking to purchase property in order to move closer to family.

Of those, 50% cited helping provide childcare for a relative as their top reason, while 44% said receiving childcare help was theirs and about 43% listed health reasons to be in better proximity to family.

“Faced with ongoing housing affordability issues and rising childcare costs, we’re seeing parents and children becoming roommates again in later years as the ‘kids’ save up to purchase their own place, siblings moving near each other to pool childcare resources, and some even buying homes with family to split the financial burden and make homeownership a reality,” said Clare Trapasso, executive news editor at

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Family isn’t just the reason why some borrowers are looking to buy a home, but it can also be how they’re doing it. Overall, 83% of surveyees said they’d consider purchasing a house with relatives or close friends. Their main motivations came from pooling money to buy a place in a better neighborhood (43%), somewhere more updated (41%) or a bigger home (38%).

Relatedly, accessory dwelling units (ADUs) are growing in popularity as well, partly due to current market conditions. While putting an ADU on your property can generate income and add square footage, 61% of those who built one did it for additional space for family to live, according to OnePoll.

In October, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) announced a new policy allowing income from ADUs to be considered in mortgage underwriting. This policy change has the goals of increasing the affordable housing supply and homeownership opportunities.

Advice for home buyers

With prices and interest rates high, and for-sale options low, prospective borrowers are taking alternative measures to become homeowners.

If you’re ready to start your path to homeownership, reach out to a local mortgage professional today to see what your options are.

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Paul Centopani
Authored By: Paul Centopani
The Mortgage Reports Editor
Paul Centopani is a writer and editor who started covering the lending and housing markets in 2018. Previous to joining The Mortgage Reports, he was a reporter for National Mortgage News. Paul grew up in Connecticut, graduated from Binghamton University and now lives in Chicago after a decade in New York and the D.C. area.
Aleksandra Kadzielawski
Reviewed By: Aleksandra Kadzielawski
The Mortgage Reports Editor
Aleksandra is the Senior Editor at The Mortgage Reports, where she brings 10 years of experience in mortgage and real estate to help consumers discover the right path to homeownership. Aleksandra received a bachelor’s degree from DePaul University. She is also a licensed real estate agent and a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR).