Student Loan Debt Makes Home Purchase Almost Impossible For Millennials

The Burden of Student Debt Affects the Real Estate Market

Student loan debt has become a paralyzing financial burden for many young Americans. Today, millenials are now moving past their college years and entering the phase in their lives where they are looking to be homeowners. However, being the generation with the most student debt in America does not make the home buying process very easy. Millenials are least likely to own a home compared to generations before them. In 2014, only about 36% of household heads between the ages of 24 and 32 years old owned a home. That is down from 45% in 2005. One of the big factors to this low-rate of homeownership is the amount of student loan debt they have.

While homeownership may be lowering, the amount of student debt continues to rise. This can be attributed to the increasing costs of higher education. The average college student graduates with about $30,000 in both private and federal loans. The more education costs the more students take out loans to pay for their education. This has created a never-ending cycle of debt that affects other aspects of life such as buying a home. The amount of student loan debt now surpass that of credit card debt with the total student loan debt being $1.56 trillion and credit card debt being $1.03 trillion. Here are some ways that student loan debt can make it difficult for millenials:

  • Debt-to-income ratio

    – The number one issue that comes up when trying to purchase the home is the debt-to-income ratio. That is the amount of money you owe to lenders versus the income your bring in. The average income of college graduates is about $59,000. However, the average monthly payment of a student loan is about $350. This becomes a large chunk of monthly expenses. Banks are often wary of those with large amount of debt, especially debt like student loans which are seen as “unsecured debt”. Meaning that this debt is likely to be paid throughout a lifetime. Often, banks would prefer candidates whose expenditures are not more than 36% of their income. However, that can be difficult if your income is only $50,000. This ratio also can be affected by the cost of housing in your specific area. Those that live in higher cost areas can find it even more difficult to secure a home loan.

  • Credit Score

    – Another aspect that strongly affects homeownership for millenials is their credit score. About 8% of student loan borrowers were denied a mortgage because of their credit score. Those between the ages of 19 and 34 years old on average have a credit score of about 625. This is much lower compared to previous generations such as Generation X who had an average of 650 and Baby Boomers whose average was 709. However, as mentioned previously millennials also have a larger amount of debt compared to these generations. Millennials’ debt-to-income ratio is directly affecting their credit scores. Often, borrowers acquire a large amount of student loan debt and upon graduation found it difficult to find stable income to payoff the debt and defaulted into their loans. This caused their credit score to lower and made it difficult to be approved for a mortgage.

  • Down Payments

    – Getting approved for a mortgage can be a difficult first step to homeownership. However, the burdening reach of student loan debt does not stop there. Saving up for a down payment for a home can be difficult when you have such huge loan debt to pay every month. Often some would-be homeowners choose to take out a short-term loan to get immediate cash to use as a down payment . This might be particularly appealing for those living in states with lower student loan debt and lower costs of living. Millennials can access an online car title loan to get immediate cash that they can use as a down payment for their home. Since it is a short term loan, unlike a student loan, it can be paid off quicker and easier.

    Higher Cost of Living – Another aspect of student loan debt that is affecting millennials’ homeownership is the higher cost of living. While millennials seem to be earning much more than previous generations, the increase of income has not combatted the rapidly increasing costs of living. Millennials not only pay more for education and housing than previous generations but they must spend more on other expenditures as well. The cost of childcare is about 2% more than previous years, which might not seem like a lot but when broken down that is about $150 on average for child care compared to about $85 a week in 1985. Millennials also spend more on health insurance, transportation, and entertainment than previous generations.

Homeownership and student loan debt can be a tumultuous relationship. Student loan debt often paralyzes millennials from acquiring an integral part of the American Dream, owning a home. Millennials do have a challenging future when it comes to purchasing a home. However, with careful budgeting and dedication to paying off debt, the dream of homeownership can be a reality.

Checkout Unique Finance and get a bonus from me.

Essential Information For Real Estate Investing

Where To Begin Investing in Real Estate

There very well may be more pieces of advice pertaining to real estate investing than there are pieces of property available. While land is limited, opinions are not. Because dumb luck isn’t dependable, the best piece of advice is to make sure you understand the basic principles of a good real estate investment. Here are some essential tips to increase your chances of profiting.

Learn Everything You Can About the Location

Emerging neighborhoods or established areas that are growing or becoming trendy represent good opportunities. Don’t get swept up in hype and overpay if you’re late on the scene, however — prices may have peaked. Still, location typically is even more important to investing success than the condition of the actual property. Also research income, employment and age demographics — and even local crime rates.

Adhere to the 1 Percent Rule

If the primary objective of your investment is to generate rental income, the monthly rental income should be no less than 1 percent of the purchase price (e.g., a $250,000 property should rent for at least $2,500 a month). This will create an annual 12 percent return — minus overhead, of course (repairs, taxes, etc.) — and typically lets you recoup your initial investment in a reasonable timeframe.

Understand Taxes and 1031 Exchange Opportunities

Taxes are complicated. Property taxes will offset some of your revenue. Your income taxes may be further reduced by a property depreciation write-off. An investment strategy called a 1031 exchange also has tax implications, allowing you to defer capital gains taxes when you sell one investment property and re-invest the proceeds in a subsequent investment property. Consult a tax professional for help with these scenarios.

Here are more basics that are less complicated, but still important:

  • Understand the big picture. Track the performance of the U.S. economy as a whole. The best real estate opportunities may present themselves during a recession or the initial stages of recovery.
  • If you have a real estate investment portfolio and not just one property, spread the risk among different industries and locations.
  • Have a plan. Outline both short- and long-term goals before getting started. Have a budget and an ownership timeline in mind, especially if you are rehabbing a property.
  • Trust experience. Talk to other investors, join real estate investment groups — just don’t rely on any sources making get-rich-quick promises.
There are no guarantees when it comes to real estate investing, but sticking with tried-and-true principles beats flying blind. For more tips, see the accompanying infographic.

 

Author bio: Dalton Sullivan is Associate VP at Precision Global Corporation, a venture capital company. Sullivan has vast knowledge of 1031 exchanges as well as senior housing investing. He has a passion for business development, real estate investing and building lifelong, professional relationships with investors.

 

Checkout Unique Finance and get a bonus from me.