More American renters believe homeownership is financially out of reach, according to a new survey that shines fresh light on the growing housing affordability crisis. The Wall Street Journal reports:
Only 24% of renters said it was “extremely likely” that they would ever own a home, 11 percentage points lower than four years ago, according to the survey set to be released Thursday by mortgage finance giant Freddie Mac . Of the renters surveyed, 82% said renting was more affordable than buying, 15 percentage points higher than February of 2018.
Meanwhile, rising rents also are creating hardships. Of the renters who moved in the last two years, 44% said they did so because they could no longer afford their rent, according to the survey…
The biggest obstacle preventing renters from buying was the difficulty in saving for down payments and closing costs, according to the Freddie Mac survey. The crunch is being felt by about 80% of millennials and members of Generation X—people born between 1965 and 1980—and 71% of baby boomers who rent.
Student loan debt is making it especially hard for millennials to afford down payments, the survey found. Of renters 23 to 29 years old, 51% said they made different housing choices than they otherwise would have because of student loans.