Jan 29, 2024 - News

Gen Z's homebuying chances in Richmond look bleak

Illustration of a real estate for sale sign with the word NOPE on it.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Richmond is one of the hardest cities in the country for Gen Zers to buy a house, along with Newark, New Jersey; Lexington, Kentucky; LA and basically all of California, the New York Times reports.

  • That's according to Point2, a data-driven real estate trend publication.

What's happening: Point2 analyzed income-to-home-price ratios, inventory, market competitiveness and other factors in the 100 largest U.S. cities and found Richmond is the ninth most difficult market for Gen Z to buy.

Why it matters: Older members of Gen Z — a generation that's now between 12 and 27 — are entering their prime homebuying years amid the yearslong real estate craze that saw home prices increase drastically, inventory plummet and bidding wars rein.

Zoom in: While some markets — particularly the ones Point2 found to be strongest for Gen Z — are seeing home prices drop, over-asking offers decline and inventory and days on the market increase, that's not the case in Richmond and Point2's other terrible markets.

  • Twenty-somethings in Boston, Seattle, San Francisco, Brooklyn, Chicago and D.C. would have an easier time landing a home than Richmonders, per the report.

By the numbers: Metro Richmond closed out last year with the median sales price for a single-family home hitting $392,000 — a 4.5% increase over 2022, according to data from the Richmond Association of Realtors.

  • Meanwhile the average single-family home sold for 1.8% over the listing price, and new listings and closed sales plummeted by 18% and 22% respectively.
  • Houses sat on the market longer, but still sold on average in 20 days.

Worth noting: Studies last year found the majority of Virginians don't become homeowners until age 37, that Richmonders need to earn just over $102,000 a year to afford one and that local Gen Zers find it impossible to save for one because they're paying so much in rent.

Sabrina's Gen Z thought bubble: Looks like I'll be a renter for the rest of my life until I can't afford that either. What a life.


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