The Real Deal Miami

First-time homeowners put off purchasing

December 01, 2011 03:02PM

The country’s most likely first-time homeowners — young professionals and couples starting families — are being forced to hold off purchasing a home, the New York Daily News reported, a fact which is keeping the housing market consistently depressed.

Despite prices having dropped to 2002 levels, prospective buyers are facing substantial down payments and debt from credit cards and student loans. The proportion of U.S. households that own homes is at 65.1 percent, the Census Bureau reports, its lowest point since 1996.

“I’ve looked for a home, but the places we can afford with the money we have are not that great,” one prospective homeowner told the News. “It also doesn’t seem smart anymore to buy with prices falling. Buying a home just doesn’t make sense to us.” [NYDN]