Data from www.Realtor.com finds Iowa’s capital city has a higher percentage of so-called “millennials” buying a home than any other city in the country. In the first six months of this year, 59 percent of the borrowers who took out a loan to buy a home in the Des Moines metro were between the ages of 25 and 34.
Iowa State University finance professor Tracy Turner says home ownership rates are rising faster in mid-sized cities like Des Moines where there’s plenty of housing available.
“Is it supply or demand?” Turner asks. “Demand in the sense of: Is there something unique about millennials at this point in time in their life that gives them the incentive and the ability to buy? Maybe. Or is it that the housing stock is still recovering and the millennials happen to be here at the right moment to buy when prices are relatively low?”
According to the National Association of Realtors, the median age of a first-time home buyer, nationally, was 31 last year and 65 percent of first-time home buyers were married. Turner says people tend to marry earlier in Midwestern cities.
“Married households are far more likely to purchase,” Turner says. “Among first-time home buyers, they will be disproportionately married and what often happens is that young people in less urbanized places, we tend to see them marrying at younger ages. They’re more likely to marry.”
The total number of homes sold throughout the state of Iowa is higher so far this year compared to last. And homes in Iowa that are up for sale are on the market for a shorter period of time.