Real Estate / ORPI Observatory: Young people, big losers in the real estate race

At the end of an electoral campaign in which the issue of purchasing power was central, Orpi unveils the results of his first observatory on the perception that the younger generations have of real estate.

More and more complicated loan conditions, tense purchasing power, constantly rising prices … If investing in stone is still a French dream, access to real estate becomes increasingly complicated for the most vulnerable populations, especially young people . Orpi highlights the concerns, perceptions and needs of the French in terms of housing and unveils the results of its first real estate Observatory. The observation is clear: increasingly excluded from the real estate path, younger generations are waiting for the house to reinvent itself to satisfy their desires.

The real estate sector remains the preferred investment of 7 out of 10 young people …

NFT, metaverse, cryptocurrencies … alternative investments that are increasingly widespread, but which do not dethrone the real estate sector! In fact, less than 1 in 10 French people would choose one of these investments to invest. Young people consider it in a higher proportion: fewer than 1 out of 5 respondents under the age of 35 could turn to this type of financial investment.

On the other hand, when it comes to investing money, real estate maintains first place on the podium: more than 7 out of 10 French people prefer real estate to invest their money! A sensation that crosses generations as 68% of under 35s (and 71% of 25-34 year olds) continue to prefer properties to build their assets.

Still perceived as a safe bet for young people: 74% of under 35s believe that it is a reassuring, profitable and always investment for the future:

  • A third of the under 35s consider it a real opportunity to create
  • More than half of those under 35 (53%) believe that the real estate sector is proof of this
    personal success. A sentiment shared by almost 60% of young people between 18 and 24 years old.

… But almost half of the young people consider it inaccessible!

Although the real estate sector has not lost its value in the eyes of the French, in the face of prices that continue to soar for several years, more and more of them are no longer able to take it into account. In fact, 2 out of 10 French do not consider this positioning at all, considering it
inaccessible. With successive increases of + 8% in 2021, then of + 6% in the first quarter of 2022 at the national level, it is the more modest populations that pay the high price. If the younger generations were to be able to project themselves there, the study shows that 42% of under 35s consider properties inaccessible.

To understand the desires and obstacles of the French and in particular of young people, Orpi also interviewed his clients:

  • Access to the property takes place later and later: of 71% of the people who declare themselves owners, 8 out of 10 respondents are over 35 years old and 50% have been owners for over 10 years.
  • On the contrary, today among the 18-25 year olds interviewed, 72% are not homeowners, but 64% are in search. Among the main obstacles, the lack of properties corresponding to their demand and their budget and the fear of not obtaining the bank loan that allows them to access the property.
  • For 25-35 years: 78% declare themselves as owners, of which 55% have a relationship with an individual in the 35-50 age group and 34% have owned for less than 1 year.

The increase in prices is a problem but not only …

As property prices have risen significantly over the past decade, contrary to purchasing power, first-time buyers are struggling to find a place in the real estate race, whether it’s an investment for a primary residence or a a rent, chaired by Guillaume Martinaud,
President of the Orpi Cooperative. Beyond rising prices, the scarcity of goods available on the market, inflation and rising borrowing rates only contribute to market tensions. Young people are increasingly competing for the same good with older profiles, perceived as more reassuring. More than ever, they need to show their credentials to both sellers and banking institutions. If we want to give them the opportunity to access it, we need to give new life to the market, with a sustainable and long-term housing and land policy that meets their wishes and needs.

Faced with these great obstacles considered by the majority of French people, 28% of young people (under 35) believe that today’s real estate cannot correspond to their wishes; an opinion shared by 30% of young people between 18 and 24 years old.

Real estate: an inaccessible dream as long as you get away

Between the health crisis and the uncertain economic context, the relationship with the home has changed considerably in the last two years. To combat the prices that have become inaccessible in most big cities and now in secondary cities, younger ones are forced or ready to move away to become owners or invest for the long term, under certain conditions though.

With the advent of teleworking, many young people have gone to enjoy a certain quality of life, moving away from the main economic centers and big cities. To settle there permanently, it is necessary to rethink goods and territories. Among the new criteria required, young people are increasingly attentive to digital comfort and ensure, for example, that their accommodation is correctly connected to the fiber. Also, if they are inclined move away, closely consider the easy access to transport, to limit the use of their vehicle “, Guillaume Martinaud comments.

Reinventing the real estate sector to attract new generations

Housing must therefore reinvent itself to meet the expectations of a new generation of real estate and “refocus on the essential”. Ecological awareness is growing more and more in consumption patterns, including housing. In fact, the study shows that 68% of respondents would like to see more eco-responsible, autonomous or eco-designed homes and for 37% it is the most important element for building the real estate of tomorrow. Furthermore, more than half of the respondents would like a life at the scale of their neighborhood with greater proximity.

As evidence of a society that is increasingly aware of today’s challenges, younger people also expect more commitments in terms of real estate:

  • More than 6 out of 10 young people between 18 and 25 envision the real estate of tomorrow with more environmentally responsible housing and 32% of young people between 18 and 24 consider eco-designed construction a priority.
  • 51% of young people between 18 and 24 are looking for a life on a local scale with greater proximity in their future real estate project.
  • 45% of 18-24 year olds and 57% of 25-34 year olds hope for greater solidarity in access to housing for the most vulnerable profiles.
  • 41% of young people between 18 and 24 would like housing to be more inclusive: access for the disabled, mixing between generations and social background …

The restructuring of real estate assets is more than ever everyone’s business, driven in particular by the Climate and Resilience law. If the French are ready to mobilize to imagine the future of the real estate sector in a more responsible way, we must give them all the cards in hand to allow them to act. Today help is a good approach but it is not enough! For example, to pass from an energy class D and comply with the calendar of legal obligations, the cost is estimated between 200 and 300 euros per square meter. We can only welcome the enthusiasm of the French people in favor of greener housing, it is our responsibility, the public authorities, professionals and stakeholders in the sector to support them “, says Guillaume Martinaud.

Environmental and social issues

In addition to these environmental challenges, the real estate sector also faces societal challenges.
The new generations are driven by the need for mobility, flexibility and agility.
The study also reveals that more than 2 out of 10 young people want more modularity in the act of purchasing.

While teleworking and the desire to live differently are part of the long term:

  • Of the Orpi customers wishing to change ownership, a third do so to change city.
  • And for those who don’t want to change ownership, 40% haven’t been seen there for more than 5 years.

Therefore, to meet the real estate needs of the French, including the younger generations, the sector must more than ever return to the center of debates to build sustainable solutions and improve access to them.

Methodology of the Observatory : Representative sample of 1009 people aged 18 and over, field work carried out between 28/04 and 02/05.
* in number of branches

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