Mar 1 2019 38376 2
More married homeowners are seeking roommates to cut costs
As the cost of home ownership continues to price out many home buyers, more and more Americans are looking for ways to cut costs.
In fact, new data reveals that in 2018, nearly 4.2 million U.S. households lived with a roommate or boarder. Of these households, more than 280,000 belonged to married couples.
According to analysis, this rate has more than doubled since 1995, which is the earliest year for which this data was tracked.
“Among all married householders, 0.46% live with roommates, up from an historical average of 0.36%. “This increase is mostly driven by married homeowners, 0.34% of whom live with roommates, or nearly 40% higher than the historical average.”
To no surprise, markets exhibiting the highest rates of married couples with roommates tend to be concentrated on the West Coast.
“In housing markets with the highest rates of married couples living with roommates, including Honolulu and Orange County,the share is between four and five times the national rate. “And it’s probably no coincidence that the areas with the most married-with-roommate households are also fairly pricey.”
Notably among the 100 largest metropolitan areas, areas with higher home prices tend to have higher rates of married couples living with roommates.
Furthermore, on average, every $100,000 increase in the median metro home value equates to a 0.25 percentage point increase in the share of married couples with roommates. This is more than half of the 0.46% national rate in 2018.
“Although home price growth is slowing nationally, the rate of appreciation continues to out strip wage growth,” the company states. “For first-time married home buyers, especially those looking to buy in those acutely unaffordable West Coast markets, finding a roommate to help defray housing costs may simply be the sensible thing to do.”