Traditional wisdom says that early adulthood is when people are able to live on their own. The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute recently revealed that many young adults can now leave behind their housing plans and pursue other goals, such as education and careers.

2015-2016, 17% of 18-24 year-olds entering adulthood were self-sufficient. The AHURI study cited data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

This trend was also apparent in higher age groups — around a third of Australians aged 25-34 (early adults) remained or moved back with their parents while some lived in shared housing.

Sharon Parkinson, a Swinburne University researcher said that rents and house values have increased faster than incomes. This makes it difficult for young adults to create their own independent, secure households.

Is it still possible for young Australians to purchase a home?

As we age, our expectations of homeownership have become more realistic. A survey found that 60% of respondents still consider homeownership their goal. In the beginning, this percentage was 70%.

Parkinson explained that 61% (or ideal homeowners) still live in their home as an adult. However, 80% of couples who have higher incomes live separately.

Many young adults believe homeownership can be achieved despite rising housing costs. Most young adults expect to purchase a home within the next five- to ten years. Another third said they would buy within the next five to ten years.

Parkinson said, “We found that many emerging adults believed they could achieve housing goals even though they didn’t plan for it.”

Education is a key indicator of homeownership

Higher education has been shown to make homeownership more likely than it was for others, according to a study. A study found that two-thirds of people can buy a house in five years from the graduation of their tertiary-educated relatives.

A little less than one third of those who completed Year 12 believed that they could become homeowners. This proportion fell to less than 25% for those who had completed Year 11 and below.

Ideal housing for young adults

The study also identified the ideal housing situation for young adults. The study revealed that apartment living preference declines as you get older.

Only 34% of emerging adults planned to live in an apartment. For the young adult population, this percentage was 21%.

“Young adults need more space. Young adults and emerging adults alike will love a home with four bedrooms. Parkinson said that this compares to 20% of older adults who desire four bedrooms or more.

Can the first homeowner deposit close housing gap

Parkinson explained that young adults have difficulty achieving their long-term housing goals due to insecurity, slow income growth, and affordability.

“Housing policy needs to be more realistic about young Australians’ futures in housing. We need new policy frameworks to help young people reach their long-term aspirations.

Parkinson believes that Parkinson’s suggestion to lower deposit amounts for first-time homebuyers could help them reach affordability.

She stated, “But before young adults consider homeownership, they must receive more support in making key life decisions, such as moving from school to work via more continuous integrated housing assistance.”