Homeownership for the younger generations of Minnesotans may be at risk, according to a new poll conducted by Morris Leatherman Company and commissioned by Housing First Minnesota.
The survey, conducted in August 2023, polled 630 randomly selected adult residents, including 350 21- to 34-year-old residents, to determine their concerns regarding homeownership for the next generation in Minnesota.
“Because of many outdated zoning laws and rules, homeowners aren’t given the option to build smaller homes on smaller lots that would allow many Minnesotans entry into homeownership,” comments James Vagle, CEO of Housing First Minnesota.
The principal concern is affordability. 45% of 21- to 34-year-olds identify the lack of money for a down payment as the main barrier to homeownership. 44% of these respondents believe that it is simply more difficult to achieve the amount needed for a down payment than it was for the previous generations.
To address these problems, the Minnesota Legislature is hoping to make modernizing zoning and regulatory reform a top priority for the next legislative season. How best to do this is still up for debate. Of voters polled, 30% voted for modernizing zoning laws, 18% pushed for more funding for housing, and 38% are interested in both. Interest in duplexes and accessory dwelling units (ADUs) is also rising fast, at 56% support.
Support for diverse and affordable housing for all Minnesotans is a top priority for many Minnesota residents, with 41% voting for this as their chief concern. 33% stated that the current residents’ desires for their community are more important.
Though every resident has their thoughts on the details, overall, the poll concluded that homeownership simply is more difficult for new buyers now than it was before. An overwhelming 97% agree that wages simply are not keeping up with inflation and rising housing costs.
“The data is clear. At a time when many policy issues divide us, Minnesotans across the political spectrum support homeowner choice,” Vagle says. “There is a clear mandate for the Legislature to modernize our zoning laws in the upcoming legislative session. We will continue to strive until every Minnesotan can achieve their dream of homeownership.”
About the poll: The poll was conducted in August 2023 and contains the results of a sample of 630 randomly selected adult residents in the State of Minnesota and a 350-balloon sample of 21- to 34-year-old residents. The results of the 630-person sample are projectable to all Minnesota residents within ± 4.0% in 95 out of 100 cases. The results of the 350-balloon sample are projectable to all 21- to 34-year-old residents within ±5.3 % in 95 out of 100 cases.