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Savvy millennials set to take advantage of COVID weakened housing market

Originally published July 2020


ING’s Future Focus: Homeownership report reveals many millennials seem to be paving new pathways to homeownership and re-thinking their ‘essentials’ to get on the property ladder.


A report by ING reveals almost half (46%) of Aussie millennial home buyers say COVID-19 has made home ownership more achievable and a third (32%) say they’ll buy a home within the next one to two years. 

According to the report, millennials say they have used lockdown to get on top of their property goals by travel budgets to a home savings account (59%), taking on a side hustle (37%), and moving back in with their parents (36%).

In order to save and buy a house sooner, half (50%) of all millennial home buyers say they would consider living on the city fringes and the outer suburbs (45km or more from the city), the report found. More than  one in five (22%) say they plan to buy a smaller property in a cheaper area and rent it out until they can afford their forever home, while one in 10 (9%) say they would consider buying a property with a friend or family member to get on the ladder quicker.

What’s more, millennials seem to be  using different tactics and making significant lifestyle sacrifices to save for their future home. Almost half (48%) say they will limit their personal shopping, reduce dining out experiences (42%) and recreational drinking (28%), give up their gym membership (21%), and date less (24%).

ING’s Head of Home Loans, Julie-Anne Bosich says:

“What this research suggests millennials and Australians in general haven’t given up on the great Australian dream of owning their own home, they’re just re-thinking how they go about getting there and re-evaluating where they might want to live.”

“It suggests many people, especially millennials are being savvy by taking advantage of record low interest rates, government assistance and a weakened housing market to get on the property ladder.”

“The ING Future Focus: Homeownership report gives an overview of how the pandemic has changed how Aussies feel about their homes and home ownership and offers practical, money saving design tips for those wanting to make better use of space.”

Key findings from Future Focus: Homeownership Report include:

  • The Australian Dream revived and re-defined: most millennial Aussies are setting their sights on owning one home (75%), over flipping houses (8%) and buying an investment property (10%)
  • The new home ‘essentials’: Millennials looking to buy are prioritising fast internet (40%), an outdoor space like a balcony, garden or patio (37%) and space to exercise (27%). They’re also buying for comfort (32%), stability/security (21%) and protecting their future (15%)
  • The home turned ‘Lifestyle Hub’: Since lockdown, a quarter of Aussies (30%) say they now see their home as a ‘lifestyle hub’ and despite public spaces now open, many plan to continue exercising (39%), dining (30%), socialising (29%) and working (25%) more frequently at home
  • Buying property with a partner: Millennials (60%) are notably more likely than Gen Z (41%) or Gen X (35%) to enter the property market with a partner, however 1 in 5 millennials (22%) plan on doing it alone


View the full ING Future Focus: Homeownership Report here. 


This research was commissioned by ING and conducted by YouGov in June 2020. It comprises two surveys: a nationally representative sample of 1,057 prospective Australian home buyers aged 18+, and a nationally representative sample of 1,056 Australians aged 18+.

Millennials: People born between 1981 and 1996

Source: YouGov

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