Millennial homebuyers: Here are 2019’s best cities for Gen Y to buy a home

Aly J. Yale
Aly J. Yale
The Mortgage Reports Contributor
July 10, 2019 - 2 min read

Oh hi, Ohio

Millennials looking to buy a house should head to Ohio. According to a new analysis, that’s where three of the nation’s 10 best cities for Millennials are located.

The best places to buy a house

A recent analysis from flat-fee real estate platform Clever reveals the best spot for Millennials to buy a home. The analysis takes into account job opportunities, home affordability, livability and the overall housing market forecast in the nation’s 100 most populated cities.

Ohio claimed three spots in the top 10, with Dayton, Akron and Cincinnati all making the list. The top spot, though, went to Rochester, New York, which scored high on affordability, livability and housing market forecast. The average Rochester home costs just $146,000 — well below the national median of $226,000.

For Millennials, homeownership is more important than marriage, kids

Other cities to make the top 10 included Des Moines, Iowa; Omaha, Nebraska; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Syracuse, New York; and Harrisburg-Carlisle, Pennsylvania. According to Thomas O’Shaughnessy, Clever’s head of research, MIllennials buying a house in these cities will likely see a solid return on their investment.

“In terms of housing market forecasts, Rochester and Omaha homes are projected to increase at a rate more than double the national average forecast, and Des Moines is right in line with that national projection at 1.87 percent,” he said. “Houses in these cities are affordable investments for Millennial home buyers and will likely appreciate in value over the next few years.”

Millennial first-time homebuyers would need 20 years to save a 20% down payment

Wave goodbye to the West Coast

The West Coast is apparently the worst place for Millennials to buy a home. According to Clever’s analysis, California claims seven of the worst cities for Millennial homebuyers, with Los Angeles, Stockton, San Bernardino, Oxnard, San Francisco, Sacrament and San Diego all making the list.

Las Vegas, Miami and Seattle all rank among the worst spots as well. Though many of these markets offer serious job opportunities, their livability and affordability scores were low.

“Though it might be a hard pill for some to swallow, the truth is that most millennials simply won’t be able to afford homes on the West Coast and East Coast,” O’Shaughnessy said. “Cities like San Jose, San Francisco and Seattle score high on the job index, but sky-high home prices and slowing housing markets make these cities unaffordable — and questionable — investments.”

The analysis also cites “poor air quality, long commutes and above-average crime rates” as other detractors along the West Coast.

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