Millennials and Gen Z are fleeing cities and buying up homes in the suburbs amid the coronavirus pandemic
Millennials are fleeing cities and buying up homes in the suburbs amid the coronavirus pandemic.
According to new research from investment management firm Cowen and Company, there’s been a noticeable migration among people ages 25 to 34 from urban areas to suburban ones. Among the 2,700 people Cowen surveyed, 48% of millennials reported living in the suburbs compared with 44% in 2019. Those who reported living in cities fell to 35%, down from 38% last year.
Cowen saw a similar trend among Generation Z respondents, or those aged 18-24: 49% reported living in the suburbs, up from 41% in 2019.
“This suburbanization trend has been slowly occurring since 2017, and we expect it to accelerate with the COVID-19 disruption,” Cowen analyst John Kernan wrote. “These results are also corroborated by a shift in home ownership.”
Home-ownership is rising among both Gen Z and millennials, Cowen found: 30% of 18- to 24-year-olds say they own their homes, up from 19% last year. And 48% of millennials say they’re home-owners, a 1% increase since 2019.
As Cowen notes, the shift away from cities and toward suburbs has been an emerging trend for the last several years. Last year, The Wall Street Journal’s Valerie Bauerlein reported that suburban America was booming as millennials sought affordable housing outside cities. Places like Frisco, Texas; Nolensville, Tennessee; Lakewood Ranch, Florida; and Scottdale, Georgia, were among the fastest-growing towns in the US, according to the Journal.
The relocation trend is reflected in real estate data from major US cities. Housing inventory in San Francisco has risen 96% year-over-year, which means there are about twice as many homes listed for sale this year than there were last year, according to a Zillow report from August.