The average homebuyer is 45 years old, but about a quarter of buyers are over 30 years old. New homebuyers are typically younger than landlords who haven't moved in the previous year, but they're older than the general renting population, according to the Zillow report. In the United States, it's legal to buy a home without a cosigner at the age of majority, which is 18 in most states. This means that people can sign legal agreements and complete real estate transactions as soon as they reach this age.
However, before reaching the age of majority, people can purchase a home with the help of a co-signer. No matter your age, it's important to assess if you're ready to start the homebuying process based on your specific financial situation and the current housing market. The difference between even one percentage point on a mortgage may not seem like a big deal, but it is, because of the way interest rates are compounded over time. Having a place to live is a necessity, and buying a home is a rite of passage that many Americans are eager to undertake if they can afford it.
Financial Readiness is key when it comes to buying a house. Among other factors, lenders consider your credit rating when determining the interest rate they will offer on a home loan. If you are in a financial position to buy a home at a young age, you should think about what that means for you. Instead of simply buying a primary residence to live the rest of their lives, people buy rental properties to generate valuable cash flow.
According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, “With the lower end of the housing market, smaller and moderately priced homes see the worst of inventory shortages, first-time homebuyers who want to enter the market are struggling to find a house they can afford.” To explain such a drastic increase in age, The Urban Institute looked at why millions of Americans are not buying homes and found that, as expected, cost played a major factor. 53% of respondents reported that they couldn't pay the down payment and a third said they didn't qualify for a mortgage. It might be wise to work with your real estate agent and lender to get an idea of how much you'll need to have saved in order to buy your own home. Buying a home can benefit you at any age, young or old, as long as the conditions are right. None of this is meant to suggest that you are irresponsible if you don't buy a house at a certain age.
The age at which you can legally buy a home is fundamentally less important than other signs that you are ready to buy.