Morning Headlines: Philly Housing Market Is One of The Best For Millennials

Since 2007, the area has seen a 25% increase in this demographic.

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Affordable places with positive job outlooks are what millennials are looking for, says a new report by RealtyTrac. Well, yeah. But where exactly are these mystical Generation Y-friendly areas with supposedly “good job prospects”? And do we live near one?

Short answer: Yes. Philly is in the top 5.

After zeroing in on counties where “at least 24 percent of the total population” consists of people born between 1977 and 1992, and “where the millennial population increased between 2007 and 2013,” the real estate website found average median income earners in Philadelphia would have to spend less than 15% of their income on a home.

There is, however, a little adjustment that may account for the county’s high ranking. From

But the study also factored in Camden and Wilmington as part of its “metro area,” which could be the reason for the lower incomes and home prices. According to RealtyTrac, the region’s median home price in April 2014 was $81,675, and the median household income was $35,801.


In any case, with renting and homeownership slowing down in the area (and Wynnewood suddenly emerging as a suburban renter’s dream), it’s nice to think the area might entice the next generation of buyers.

Philadelphia ranked No. 5 most affordable housing market for millennials []

Moving onto news elsewhere…

With Demolition Likely, RIP Dewey’s Famous [Hidden City]

Revel reported to have no bidders; 3 could be under review [Inquirer]

Bucolic Bucks bridge could cost nearly $800K to repair [Courier Times]

New townhome project, Haverford Walk, approved in Lower Merion [Main Line Times]

Pottstown residents concerned over proposed convenience store [69 WFMZ]

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  • Lifelong Philadelphian

    Schools. Schools. Schools. I agree with this article and the research with one exception: millennial couples with a child or looking to have a child soon. Millennials are living in Philadelphia until they have a child, then all of a sudden, none of the above facts matter if you plan to use the public school system.

    I know many people say, “Well, you know, you don’t have to worry about that until your child is around 5 or 6 years old.” The problem is that most of these millennial couples own one bedroom homes/condos or two bedroom homes/condos with the “2nd bedroom” being the size of a walk-in closet. If you are a millennial couple in Philadelphia, you most likely have student loans, work at a senior-staff/young-management position in your careers, and eventually want a safe place to raise and teach your child. You just can’t find a home in a safe neighborhood with enough room for a child in Philadelphia at the price point a millennial couple can afford.

    Moreover, if your thought is to buy a home and simply move to the burbs when you have a child and he/she reaches school age, keep in mind the financial loss potential involved in buying and selling a home that you haven’t owned for 10 years or more. In 2010 my wife and I bought our home in a great neighborhood in downtown Philadelphia for $260k, plus approximately $15k in closing costs. We renovated most of the home including the kitchen, master bath, and fireplace for a total of around $35k over the 5 year term we’ve lived there. Our house is now selling around $290k after several months on the market and price reductions. The closing costs at selling will again be approximately $20k. All-in with closing costs, we stand to take a $40k loss on our personal books. Again, over the course of a long ownership, closing costs dissipate as home values increase and cause less of an impact. Unfortunately, the whole “millennial ownership” conversation lends itself to a similar situation where closing costs demolish any potential upside over the course of only 5-or-so years of ownership.

    Philadelphia needs to provide a damn public school system and a safe neighborhood, so we don’t have to move out of the city as soon as we have kids. If that ever happens, I’ll absolutely support the millennial property ownership movement.