How many millennials can actually afford to buy a home in 16 of the biggest US metro areas

Millennials are struggling to buy homes.

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Millennials are struggling to buy homes.
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Ivan Hunter/Getty Images

Homeownership is looking ever more like a pipe dream for millennials.

Only 13% of millennial renters in the US can afford a standard 20% down payment on a median-priced home in the next five years, according to a new Apartment List survey. The survey polled over 10,000 millennials, defined as those ages 23 to 38. For a 10% down payment, that jumps to 25%; for a 5% down payment, it’s 39%.

But those numbers vary depending on where you’re buying a home. Apartment List broke down the percentage of millennial renters who can afford a 20%, 10%, and 5% down payment within the next five years in 16 of the biggest US metro areas.

To estimate how long it would take each renter to save, Apartment List compared millennials’ current savings levels, (adjusted for inflation and wage growth) against median metro-level condo prices from the National Association of Realtors (adjusted for historical home price appreciation).

Turns out, California is a hard place to save for a home. Only 7% of millennial renters in San Francisco can afford a 20% down payment in five years – and they don’t fare much better in Los Angeles or San Diego.

Here’s where else millennial renters are struggling to save for a home purchase. Note that all median home prices provided are from National Association of Realtors.


The median home price in Atlanta, Georgia, is $238,100.

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Shutterstock/Sean Pavone

20% down payment: 16%

10% down payment: 24%

5% down payment: 39%


The median home price in Boston, Massachusetts, is $507,400.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 8%

10% down payment: 20%

5% down payment: 37%


The median home price in Chicago, Illinois, is $269,700.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 16%

10% down payment: 29%

5% down payment: 37%


The median home price in Dallas, Texas, is $271,100.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 14%

10% down payment: 29%

5% down payment: 45%


The median home price in Denver, Colorado, is $465,700.

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f11photo/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 9%

10% down payment: 20%

5% down payment: 28%


The median home price in Houston, Texas, is $248,900.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 19%

10% down payment: 34%

5% down payment: 43%


The median home price in Los Angeles, California, is $649,600.

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Let Go Media/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 8%

10% down payment: 21%

5% down payment: 37%


The median home price in Miami, Florida, is $365,000.

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Getty Images

20% down payment: 13%

10% down payment: 30%

5% down payment: 43%


The median home price in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is $290,800.

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f11photo/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 16%

10% down payment: 34%

5% down payment: 45%


The median home price in New York City, New York, is $400,100.

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Atanas Bezov/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 18%

10% down payment: 31%

5% down payment: 46%


The median home price in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is $256,200.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 15%

10% down payment: 33%

5% down payment: 45%


The median home price in Phoenix, Arizona, is $289,200.

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welcomia/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 13%

10% down payment: 18%

5% down payment: 35%


The median home price in San Diego, California, is $645,000.

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Shutterstock

20% down payment: 8%

10% down payment: 24%

5% down payment: 36%


The median home price in San Francisco, California, is $964,000.

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Travel Stock/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 7%

10% down payment: 21%

5% down payment: 37%


The median home price in Seattle, Washington, is $520,500.

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 15%

10% down payment: 23%

5% down payment: 37%


The median home price in Washington, DC, is $439,800.

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Brian Kinney/Shutterstock

20% down payment: 14%

10% down payment: 28%

5% down payment: 40%