Australians put life and family on hold in favour of property

by Julia Corderoy10 Dec 2015
Owning a home is still a top priority for most Australians, with a new survey revealing that many Australians are putting off major life goals in pursuit of getting onto the property ladder.

The national survey, commissioned by industry super fund-owned lender ME, found that nearly half of Australians (49%) admit that they have sacrificed important life goals to buy their first home.

Delaying or downgrading holidays is the most common sacrifice (30%), followed by delaying or downgrading a car purchase (21%).

Getting married and having children were even sometimes scarified or delayed in favour of saving for a deposit. 

Fourteen percent of those surveyed said they had delayed or decided to have fewer children, 12% said they either delayed or downsized their honeymoon and 10% said they delayed or downsized their wedding.

However, there are some non-negotiables. Of those with children, only 7% decided to send their children to a less expensive school and only 6% delayed or sacrificed starting their own business due to their mortgage.  

The research also revealed that Gen Y were sacrificing the most for the Australian dream of owning their own home. Over two thirds of Millennials (69%)  had put off life goals in order to commit to a mortgage, significantly more than Gen X (46%) or Baby Boomers (41%).   

ME head of home loans, Patrick Nolan, said the research indicates Millennial first home buyers are doing it tougher than previous generations. 

“Everyone who buys a house makes sacrifices in order to meet that commitment, but it’s getting more difficult − not surprising when house prices have more than doubled since 2000, out-stripping rises in real incomes.

“Fortunately there are a number of smart strategies first home owners can deploy to make it easier, like buying with friends or family, buying in alterative locations, or starting out with an investment property.”