Access to family support has become “the single biggest factor” enabling young Australians to enter the property market, according to a report by researchers at the University of Sydney.
The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute found 40% of 25- to 34-year-olds expected to call on the “bank of mum and dad” to achieve home ownership, with 74% of adult renters holding less than $5,000 in savings.
Dr Laurence Troy, the study’s lead researcher and a senior lecturer in urbanism, said rapidly rising house prices and cost of living have further limited young Australians’ chances of buying a house, with even households on moderate incomes unable to keep pace.
“One of the most important saving strategies to emerge was living with parents or in properties owned by parents,” Troy said.
“However, if only those with families who can provide support can [save for a house], then those who don’t have supportive family are potentially locked out of home ownership altogether.”
The research included the financial diaries of 20 households, allowing the researchers to analyse the complexities of participants’ spending habits.
“The diaries confirmed that young adults are actively using strategies to support saving, such as minimising discretionary spending and paying ahead on utility bills,” Troy said.
“They’re not spending much … with the most common saving strategies being cooking at home – including relying on meals of 2-minute noodles.”
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The survey cited unstable and low incomes as a major hurdle to saving for a deposit, with 70% of those surveyed holding multiple jobs in the last five years and 40% seeking more hours of work.
Interestingly, most of those surveyed did not see government support as crucial to their home ownership goal, indicating current policies like stamp duty exemptions have not addressed