Gen Ys are often criticised for not only wanting it all but wanting it all now, without having to work all that hard for it. However it seems that criticism isn’t always warranted. Gen Y females are both financially-focused and property-savvy, with 87% listing owning a home and paying it off as a top lifetime goal. The Westpac Home Ownership Report reveals that only 79% of men stated the same thing.
More Gen Y women are prioritising owning a home at a young age ahead of having children and getting married with 49% listing home ownership as their number one priority, compared to 5% listing getting married and 14% listing having children as their ultimate goal.
“Owning a home is one of the first financial milestones for those who have just started their first job or left university, so saving for a deposit becomes a priority,” Westpac’s head of home ownership Melanie Evans told Women’s Agenda.’
“It’s great to see so many young women establishing themselves financially irrespective of their relationship status. Gen Y are not going to be the generation that delay home ownership until they get married and start a family.”
This generation of women have a strong familiarity of essential home loan aspects with 81% of those surveyed understanding what a variable rate is, versus only 60% of Gen Y males. Almost three quarters of Gen Y females listed paying off their loan sooner as the most important factor when taking out a home loan (compared to only 56% of Gen Y men). The General Manager of Retail Banking at Westpac Gai McGrath says this focus on repayments clearly demonstrates their understanding of the savings benefits.
“It is positive to see Gen Y women prioritising home ownership at a young age,” McGrath says. “Beyond this it’s good to see that they keep their eyes on the prize with the goal to pay off their loans as soon as possible. Owning a home is one of the best ways to start growing long time financial security.”
While many Gen Y women view owning a home outright as a great way to take control of their financial future it can be a daunting and overwhelming task. Evans says it is crucial to make your money work hard as soon as you have put a deposit down.
“To achieve that goal it’s important that they arm themselves with as much information as possible. We recommend using an offset account, increasing the frequency of repayments to fortnightly as opposed to monthly and making additional repayments above your minimum wherever possible,” Evans says.
“There is a real sense of security in owning a home – it not only offers a place of residence and sense of identity, but is also a valuable investment for the long term. With a bit of discipline, Gen Ys can get their foot on the property ladder in their mid to late twenties.”
Gen Y women are financially focused and by employing one or all of the above strategies they will be on the fast-track to owning their first home.