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Buying a home may not be a priority for all

Homeownership is sometimes viewed as one of a person's many steps on the way to true adulthood. To some Minneapolis residents, giving up an apartment with friends in lieu of buying a home with a significant other signifies the start of a lifestyle committed to the family and home. Although this has been a trend in the past, recent studies are suggesting that young people have a different view on homeownership than those of generations past.

According to a study out of Harvard University, the percentage of Americans who own their homes has dropped each year over the last decade. The trend is occurring in Minnesota as well. While some of these drops may have to do with personal preferences toward leasing homes, others have to do with economic factors as well.

For example, around the time that the Harvard study noted drops in national homeownership, the national residential real estate bubble burst. Individuals found themselves with exorbitant mortgages and dwindling home values. Those who bought before the bubble burst discovered that they were losing money as the owners of their own homes.

As fewer people look to buy residential property, demand in the rental market has increased. Competition for space has allowed local landlords to raise rents and to write terms into their lease agreements that may not otherwise be acceptable to individuals seeking rental homes. Attorneys who work in the real property field may be able to assist their clients in reviewing lease agreements for potentially negative terms.

Many people still want to buy and live in their own homes. However, economic and personal factors may be keeping some from signing on the dotted lines of purchase agreements. As the national economy recovers, Minnesotans will have to see if interest in homeownership increases to the levels historically seen.

Source:, "Homeownership may not be part of the American Dream," Vicki Ikeogu, July 18, 2015

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