The year 2022 was the time when more than half of American millennials became homeowners. Before that year, the majority of them were renting a living place.
According to research conducted by RentCafe.com, a nationwide apartment search website, 52 percent of millennials, the largest generation in the United States, owned their own house in 2022. RentCafe.com used a dataset from a University of Minnesota survey.
From 2017 to 2022, 7 million more millennials became homeowners, reaching 18.2 million homeowners, compared to 17.2 million renters in this generation. They remained the top renters in numbers compared to other generations.
The research followed Pew Research Center’s definitions for generations, where baby boomers are people born from 1946 to 1964, Generation X from 1965 to 1980, millennials from 1981 to 1996, and Generation Z from 1997 to 2012.
That is to say, millennials are now between 27 to 42 years old.
When millennials became majority homeowners, the average millennial was 34 years old.
Baby boomers are comprised of 32.1 million homeowners and 9.1 million renters, and are the largest group of homeowners in the United States.
When baby boomers became majority homeowners, the average boomer was 33 years old.
Gen X recorded 1.9 million new household owners in the last five years, while baby boomers saw a decline of 354,000 within the same timeframe.
Millennials had a 64 percent increase in homeownership from 2017 to 2022.
The increase in both renting and homeownership for Gen Z in the same timeframe is expected, given their ages (11–26 years old in 2023).
Millennials, also called Gen Y, reached a historically high median income of $108,000 per year in 2022, as their ages and careers progressed.
The median home price in the United States has been on a steady climb ever since pandemic lockdowns, going from $322,600 in the spring of 2020 to $454,900 in the summer of 2022, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
The study also looked at homeownership in the biggest metro cities in the United States, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Dallas.
“The number of Millennial homeowners in New York increased by 90 percent in the last five years, despite the median home sale price in the metro remaining above the $600,000 threshold since 2018,” according to the study.
When it comes to renting, there was an 892 percent rise in Gen Z renters in New York during the last five years. All of the other generations the research looked at lost renters in New York, including millennials who lost 0.3 percent.
For this study, RentCafe.com looked at the number of owner and renter households for each generation across 260 U.S. metro areas available from an IPUMS CPS survey. IPUMS is a part of the University of Minnesota.