Bankwest’s Home Truths research suggests WA’s next generation of homebuyers is gearing up to enter the property market, with significant shifts in the saving and purchase intentions of the state’s youngest house hunters.
Bankwest’s Home Truths survey collected responses from more than 1700 Australians, with a focus on WA, to better understand the needs, preferences, and attitudes of those who own, or aspire to own, their own home.
The data revealed a strong shift in the purchasing intentions of the state’s youngest group of homebuyers, with the number of people planning to buy an established home in the next 12 months tripling since 2020.
Just five per cent of WA’s Gen Z respondents – those aged 14 to 25-years-old – from the Home Truths 2020 survey intended to buy a home in the next 12 months, but that number jumped to 14 per cent in this year’s analysis.
It was a figure that had the state’s young homebuyers leading their national counterparts, with New South Wales (9%) the next Gen Z group most likely to go house hunting, followed by Victoria (8%), and Queensland (7%).
The data also suggested from where those priorities were shifting, with almost half of WA Gen Zs (43%) in 2020’s survey intending to buy a car in the next 12 months – but that number plummeted to 23 per cent this year.
There were also indications that as Gen Z grew older, the perception of homeownership was shifting from abstract dream to concrete goal, with the number of those uncertain about housing preference slashed by three quarters.
About one-in-six (16%) of Gen Zs in 2020 said they were unsure of the type of house they preferred, with that figure falling to just four per cent in Home Truths 2022 – the lowest level of uncertainty for any WA generation band.
Most of WA’s Gen Zs (45%) remained set on a stand-alone house, but that fell from 51 per cent in 2020, while those looking at a duplex/townhouse more than doubled (7 to 16%), indicating price realities were now a consideration.
Western Australia’s Gen Z respondents also appeared to be preparing to put their money where their goals were, as the most likely of any generation in the state – and any Gen Z group in the country – to have recently saved money.
Other signs of increased engagement in financial matters from 2020-22 included more Gen Zs having read about finances in the paper (8 to 13%), used investment apps (5 to 13%), and talked finances on social media (6 to 12%).
Bankwest General Manager Home Buying Peter Bouhlas said: “We know from other results in the Home Truths research that the Australian dream of owning a home is alive and well with the next generation of homebuyers.
“This new data suggests the next generation is now preparing to enter the housing market, with several of these responses indicating potential Gen Z buyers are thinking more specifically about how they will achieve their goal.
“We see that in the significant move away from an intention to buy a car, which in-part can be attributed to soaring vehicle costs and supply challenges, but that doesn’t explain the jump in those who were looking to buy a house.
“The dramatic fall in the number of Western Australia’s young people who weren’t sure what property they would prefer is also a strong indicator that Gen Z is actually out-and-about and considering what is achievable.
“That is supported by the increase from 2020 in the number of young people preferring smaller dwellings, such as duplexes or townhouses, with the lower price-point an understandable consideration in the current environment.
“All of that, combined with increased savings behaviours and financial engagement, suggests we could be seeing the start of the next wave of homebuyers entering the market, as the state’s Millennials make way for Zoomers."
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