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Buying a home

Home ownership for millennials: Living in the future

15 April 2020

What comes to mind when you think of a home? A house in the suburbs with a white picket fence and a dog on the front lawn? That may have been the dream for older generations, but the concept of home is changing dramatically, with millennials moving away from tradition. The future of living means rethinking the picket fence – learning to see home as a way of living or a place of the moment, rather than the sentimental brick houses from your grandparents’ photo albums. Here are a few alternatives to home ownership.   

Renting for life

With sky-high property prices and lingering student loan debt, many millennials are choosing to rent for life. This suits those who are delaying (and sometimes skipping) marriage and kids.

Of course, a home can still be a great way to build wealth, since you’ll have an asset that can appreciate, but only if you can afford it! Before you take the home ownership plunge, you’ll need to calculate the costs. The price of a home is more than a mortgage and deposit. There are many hidden fees, like utility fees, insurance, maintenance and repairs.

If this sounds like biting off more than you can chew, stick with renting, at least for now. Financial security is still achievable for long-term renters if you’re strict about saving! Download the Suncorp App and use our Dollar Tracker to master your money-saving mission!

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Co-housing communities

In an increasingly disconnected (and expensive) time, some millennials are returning to the village-like communities of the past. Co-housing sounds radical, but it’s been around for most of human civilisation! The modern equivalent features a bunch of share houses or closely connected flats with communal spaces. Many things are shared, from the cooking, cleaning and childrearing, to the costs. This trend may be a welcome change in an age where most of us don’t even know our neighbours! In recent times, co-housing communities have popped up around Australia. Murundaka, which means ‘a place to stay’, is a Melbourne-based eco-village with shared bathrooms, multi-purpose rooms and a library. Its residents are united by the common aim of lowering their carbon footprint. In some cases, being priced out of owning a home means gaining an entire tribe.  

Buying with friends

Views on partnership have also changed over time. People are staying single longer – sometimes even for life! And it’s becoming more widely accepted that the traditional ‘diamond ring, house in the suburbs’ dream isn’t for everyone.

Living in the future can mean buying a home with someone who isn’t a romantic partner – who says you can’t shack up with your BFFs? An impossible mortgage suddenly looks possible when the load is shared with friends. If you’re looking for inspo you’ll find it in the suburbs of Guangzhou, China. This is where seven female best friends built a glass mansion complete with a pool and tea pavilion. The idea initially began as a joke, but it's now where these best friends will spend their retirement – Golden Girls vibes, anyone?

At Suncorp Bank, you can co-sign a mortgage with friends. We’re here to support your borrowing journey, whoever you choose to spend your life with. For more info on home loans, contact a friendly mobile lender today!

Tiny homes

A house and a set of wheels don’t usually go together. But millennials worldwide are trying out a new home ownership hack: mobile homes. The concept is simple; first you purchase a caravan, then you construct a shipping container house on top of it. This is what tiny house owners have done globally. Embracing simplicity is part of the process. You can’t have roomy sofas or 40-inch TVs. A big plus, however, is the freedom to drive off anywhere and take your home with you.

Dollhouse-like homes are pretty cool, but they’re not for everyone. If the traditional route is the dream, it may still be doable. You could take inspo from tiny houses without going all the way – there may be ways to downsize the house of your dreams without committing to the campervan life.

Suncorp Bank knows the struggle of buying a home in this market, so we’ve made it easier for first home buyers. We offer competitive home loan rates and a dedicated home loan specialist to walk you through the process! We’ll also refund the annual $375 fee for the life of the loan – that’s $11,250 saved, if your loan is paid back over a 30-year period!

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Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as Suncorp Insurance. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement before making a decision about this insurance. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.

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