Who Has It Harder When Purchasing and Settling a Home – Boomers, Generation X, or Millennials?

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When Kerrie Boylett, a single mother of one, sought to purchase a home in 1995 at the age of 40 and with her nine-year-old daughter by her side, most lenders declined her request. Now retired at the ripe old age of 68, Ms Boylett is thankful for those who gave her a chance when others did not.

It was a lot harder for me to get a loan as a single person and a woman — it was practically impossible,” Ms Boylett said. 

After much effort, Ms Boylett could secure a loan from one lender. She purchased her inaugural home in Coogee, New South Wales (NWS), for $150,000 with a 15% down payment (purchased through 10 years of hard-earned savings). Her variable interest rate saw an enormous 19%, combined with low income making it difficult for her to meet daily living expenses.

After investing in multiple properties through the years, Ms Boylett upgraded to a Balmain home that is significantly more valuable than what houses were priced at during the mid-90s. She later joined Merivale – founded by John Hemmes – and was placed in a senior role with them.

After Hemmes’ passing, twenty years after Ms Boylett acquired her initial house, she was left with an inheritance. She believes that the baby boomers made tremendous sacrifices to make it in life, and millennials must do likewise if they want to become homeowners one day.

They [millennials] want, you know, the latest mobile phone, the latest iPad, they want a nice car, they want to go on holidays, they still want to go out to restaurants they pay $20 or $30 for a drink if they go out, have a nice time,” she says.

It is a debate that has raged for some time – who faces the most significant roadblocks when it comes to attaining homeownership: baby boomers (1946-1964), Generation X (1965-1980), or millennials (1981-1996)?

According to economists and housing analysts, the answer depends on your perspective. Are we discussing new buyers or owners in general? No matter how you look at it, one thing remains true; owing to significant bumps along the way, secure home ownership across Australia appears more distant with each generation.

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