This is Why Millennials Aren’t Buying Homes (Hint: It’s Student Loan Debt)

young couple moving into a new home or apartment
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It’s no big hush-hush secret that millennials are up to their ears in student loan debt.

Yet another survey highlights the burden.

A survey from the National Association of Realtors in conjunction with American Student Assistance found that millennial respondents (those born between 1980 and 1998) had accrued a median debt of $41,200. In context, the median income of all respondents was $38,800.

This is nothing very new. But what the survey did reveal was how student loan debt is affecting other big decisions…

This is What to Do With Your Debt if You Want to Buy a House

We’ve written about a ton of people who are just trying to move on from their student loans.

Including Jammie Proctor and John DePrato.

Proctor was 36, had more than $50,000 in student debt and desperately wanted to pay off a house and start investing.

DePrato was $65,000 in debt — with a bachelor’s and MBA. He wanted to build a house with his wife, but the process proved nearly impossible with a monthly $850 payment.

Both decided to refinance their loans through a platform called Credible. It was an easy process, and rather than only getting one option, Credible aggregated a bunch, so they could each pick a more personalized plan that best suited their needs. Some have compared Credible to a Kayak or Zillow — but for student loans.

By refinancing, Proctor saved an estimated $6,000 to $7,000. He’ll be debt-free in seven years.

DePrato cut his monthly payments down from $850 to $400, so he could continue to build his dream home.

Really, they had nothing to lose. They just typed some basic information into Credible, and bam: so many refinancing options.

You’ve got more options, too. Try using some of these strategies.

For Millennials, Student Loan Debt Impacts These 5 Big Decisions

Earlier this year, Anna Sale, the host of the podcast “Death, Sex & Money,” put together a two-part project highlighting student loan debt.

At one point, a woman explains how she feels guilty making any sort of purchase because of her debt — even when it comes to something as simple as a dish rack. It was $80.

So how else is student loan debt impacting millennials’ decisions?

The National Association of Realtors and the American Student Assistance programs asked, and here’s what folks said:

  1. 76% of respondents said it’s impacted their decision to purchase a home.
  1. 72% of respondents said it’s impacted their decision to take a vacation.
  1. 65% of respondents said it’s impacted their decision to buy a car.
  1. 64% of respondents said it’s impacted their decision to continue their education.
  1. 58% of respondents said it’s impacted their decision to take on roommates versus renting solo.

Only 5% said their student loan debt has had no impact on their decisions.

Carson Kohler (@CarsonKohler) is a junior writer at The Penny Hoarder.