A great many of those who are members of the so-called Generation Z are eager to buy a home and more than ready to do what it takes. Generation Z (also called the “Digital” or “Net” generation) comprises people born roughly between 1996 and 2010. And that means a lot of them are entering the home buying market. If you’re one of them, you also know that you face certain challenges and have some specific requirements that previous generations largely didn’t. Take a look, then, at our home buying guide for Generation Z in Houston.
Setting the Stage for a Generation Z Home Buying Guide
As you likely know, GenerationZ has some defining characteristics and pretty definite requirement when it comes to real estate. Some of the most important of these characteristics are that they:
- Are less likely to believe in the “American dream” than say Baby Boomers or Millennials
- Are often saddled with significant student debt
- Have lived through 9/11 and other terrorist episodes and so feel less secure than previous generations
- Are tech savvy and rely heavily on mobile devices
- Typically are more risk-averse than their predecessors
- Often are well educated, but underemployed.
When it comes to real estate and home buying, the members of Generation Z typically:
- Are more conservative than their parents and grandparents
- View homeownership as a life goal, with 97% aiming at home ownership
- Concentrate social media use on Snapchat, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram and will use these channels for home shopping
- Expect to purchase a first home when they are between the ages of 26 and 30
- Plan to use a real estate agent in the home buying process (with 81% declaring this intention)
Step-by-Step Home Buying Guide
Now we come to the actionable steps in our home buying guide for Generation Z in Houston. And because these home buyers are facing financial issues as their major challenge, that’s where the focus will be. So, if you’re Generation Z-er and are ready to buy a home, here’s what to do.
CONSULT A FINANCIAL ADVISER
Most recent college graduates (and most likely you are) have little experience with financial budgeting. A good financial adviser can help you maximize both your income and your savings. Even if you do know how to budget and save, talking to a financial adviser will help you be more confident in your decisions. For, remember, you may have to save for a downpayment of up to 20% of the home purchase price – and that may take some doing.
ELIMINATE CREDIT CARD DEBT
Of all the steps in our home buying guide for Generation Z in Houston, this one may be the most important for Generation Z people who have likely relied heavily on credit cards. But if you want to qualify for a mortgage, you’ll have to eliminate (or pay down substantially) that credit card debt. This is one of the major things you can do to improve your credit score in order to qualify for a mortgage with better rates.
USE FREE MONEY
And we would certainly be remiss in our home buying guide for Generation Z in Houston if we didn’t mention the “free” money that’s available. This free money comes in the form of various options for no or low down payment home mortgages. So do be sure to check into FHA, USDA, and VA (among other) loans.
SAVE AGGRESSIVELY AND SAVE SMART
Even if you are lucky enough to currently be living with your parents or in some other financially beneficial living arrangement, you should be saving as if you were actually spending that money. So, for example, pretend you’re paying $750 a month on rent and don’t spend it. Instead, save that money toward your down payment.
SHOP FOR THE BEST RATES AND TERMS
In addition, with your tech familiarity, shop online for the best interest rates when getting ready to make that home purchase. Traditional lenders like big banks don’t necessarily offer the best rates or loan terms. Often, then, online banks are a better option.
Talk to Your Local Agent
Finally – and probably the most important aspect of any home buying guide for Generation Z in Houston – talk to a qualified local real estate agent. Your local agent can advise you on the conditions of the local market and can help you achieve your goal of home ownership.