Where the millennials at? And where do they want to be, with all that discretionary income of theirs? Marketing professionals everywhere want to know if the anti-suburban sentiment in "the culture" these days has made an impact on these tweeters, these re-sharers, these snapchatting web kidz. Well! According to a survey from the National Association of Home Builders, 66 percent of millennials still want to live in the suburbs. Two-thirds! Did they learn nothing from the third studio album by the Canadian indie rock band Arcade Fire?
Rose Quint, NAHB's assistant vice president of survey research, tells the Wall Street Journal that, "while you are more likely to attract this generation than other generations to buy a condo or a house downtown, that is a relative term. The majority of them will still want to buy the house out there in the suburbs," largely because they "want to live in more space than they have now," ideally within close driving distance of a premium outlet mall, ideally with a Noodles & Company. Though that does come with a major caveat.
The survey results, though, could be skewed because they included only millennials who first answered that they bought a home within the past three years or intended to do so in the next three years. That excluded young people who intend to rent for many more years, which is a large and growing group, in part because of hefty student debt and the tight mortgage-lending standards of recent years. Bought a home? Are these people even millennials?