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Despite being in the prime years to buy their first home, an overwhelming majority of those in the Millennial age bracket with student debt currently do not own a home, and believe this debt is to blame for what they typically expect to be a seven-year delay from buying.

This is according to a new joint study on Millennial student loan debt released by the National Association of Realtors and nonprofit American Student Assistance.

The survey results suggest that student debt is holding back Millennials from financial decisions and personal milestones, such as adequately saving for retirement, changing careers, continuing their education, marrying and having children.

The new study found that only 20 percent of Millennial respondents currently own a home, and that they are typically carrying a student debt load ($41,200) that surpasses their annual income ($38,800). Most respondents borrowed money to finance their education at a four-year college (79 percent), and slightly over half (51 percent) are repaying a balance of more than $40,000.

Among the 80 percent of Millennials in the survey who said they do not own a home, 83 percent believe their student loan debt has affected their ability to buy. The median amount of time these Millennials expect to be delayed from buying a home is seven years, and overall, 84 percent expect to postpone buying by at least three years.

“Sales to first-time buyers have been underwhelming for several years now, and this survey indicates student debt is a big part of the blame,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors.

“Even a large majority of older Millennials and those with higher incomes say they’re being forced to delay home-ownership, because they can’t save for a down payment and don’t feel financially secure enough,” Yun said.  

A quarter of current millennial homeowners said their student debt is preventing them from selling their home to buy a new one, either because it’s too expensive to move and upgrade, or because their loans have impacted their credit for a future mortgage.