Why It’s So Hard For Millennials To Buy Homes

Buying a house is harder for millennials than it was for their parents’ generation, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost. Depending on where you want to live, how much debt you have, and how much you have saved, buying a house might not be out of the question—if you’re willing to compromise.

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Following is a transcript of the video:

Alyssa Pagano: When I was born, the median price for a house was $108,900. Now, it’s $337,200. Even if you account for inflation, that’s about a 45% increase in cost. But buying a house is something I would like to do. So I’m trying to figure out if I can.

The odds are pretty stacked against me. I’m a millennial, and I graduated college in 2010, right in the middle of the recession. When I entered the workforce, the job market was rough. Like many of my peers, I have student loan debt. And on top of that, there aren’t very many starter or mid-price homes on the market. My personal financial situation has to do with choices I made. I changed careers at 27, I took out loans to go back to grad school, and I didn’t manage to save any money before that. But that’s not abnormal for someone my age.

According to a LinkedIn study, it’s common for millennials to change jobs about three times in the first five years after college. And in the eight years I’ve been out of college, I’ve lived in New York City the whole time. Median cost of a home here? $770,000. I certainly can’t afford that. When I look at my income, cost of living and student loan debt, the idea of buying something as expensive as a house seems nearly impossible.

My dream home would look something like this. Or this. But even if my boyfriend and I took our combined income of $100,000 a year, that apartment is a pipe dream. I went to Business Insider’s own financial planner, Lauren Lyons Cole. I figured if anyone could help me, it would be her.

Lauren Lyons Cole: When you’re just starting out, you can calculate a general price range by taking your annual income and multiplying it by three. With a combined income of about $100,000 a year, that means a home that costs around $300,000 would be a good starting point.

Pagano: That’s not as bad as I was expecting, but I have no idea what I can get for that price.

Cole: With a budget like that in New York City, you probably aren’t gonna find that many options. So you might have to make sacrifices, which could even mean relocating to another city. But then you have to figure out what kind of job options are there, and how much could you get paid to do the work you want to do. You have to think about which amenities you really want and which ones you can do without.

Pagano: I’ve always wanted some kind of outdoor space, like maybe a balcony. A two-bedroom would be nice… big windows… maybe a turret. What? I’m a millennial. I’m idealistic.

Cole:  Once you have an idea of what you can afford and what you’re willing to give up, you can take the next step and start looking at listings that are available in your price range.

Pagano: With the budget Lauren and I came up with, I browsed options in a few cities I could see myself living in. I wasn’t amazed with anything I came across, but there were some that were nice. Not so much in New York, especially when I compare it to the apartment I live in now, which is below market rent.

I also checked out Grand Rapids, Michigan because it was number one on Business Insider’s list of best housing markets for millennials. There, I did find some amazing places within my budget, but I can’t see myself picking up and moving there right now. For me, owning a place isn’t worth living somewhere where I don’t know anyone and I don’t have a job lined up. So I think for now I’m gonna keep renting and try to save up for a down payment. Maybe in a few years the price of avocado toast will go down, and I’ll be able to afford that dream castle.

Maybe a balcony… a two-bedroom would be nice… big windows… maybe a turret.

This Bike Seat Is Also A Lock

This seat is also a bike lock. The Seatylock is designed to secure your bike and seat. It unfolds into a 3-foot lock in seconds. Lift the lever. Pull the lock apart. Unlock the links. We tried the Seatylock ourselves.

Alyssa Pagano: “Hey, I’m Alyssa Pagano. I’m a regular biker and today I’m going to test out the Seatylock. I’m going to see how easy it is to install, what it’s like to lock it up, and how comfortable it is to ride.”

“First I’m going to take off my seat that I have right now.”

The lock is made of hardened steel. It’s incredibly strong. It can withstand cutting, sawing, drilling, and smashing. 

Pagano: “So I had a chance to ride the bike around with the Seatylock on. I locked it to a pole, I locked it to a bike rack. I cruised around the city a little bit and the seat was pretty comfortable. So my first impression of installing the seat was pretty much just like installing any other seat. It kind of made the bike feel a little top heavy when I was pushing it, but then when I was on the bike it felt totally normal. The lock was a little bit cumbersome, but generally, you just pop it off, wrap it around the pole, like it up. But if you looking for something that doubles as a seat and a lock, and you want to minimize the number of things you’re carrying with you, then I think it’s great.”

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Business Insider is the fastest growing business news site in the US. Our mission: to tell you all you need to know about the big world around you. The BI Video team focuses on technology, strategy and science with an emphasis on unique storytelling and data that appeals to the next generation of leaders – the digital generation.

Shake Shack just added chili to the menu — here’s what it’s like

Shake Shack just started serving slow-braised beef chili. It comes on a burger, on a hot dog, on fries, or as a side. The chili is being served nationwide, but you can’t get it at airports or stadiums. Following is the transcript of the video.

Shake Shack now serves chili. You can get it four ways. Only three are on the menu. Get it on a hot dog, on a burger, or on fries. This isn’t on the menu, but you can also get the chili as a side. Here’s what we thought about it.

Kate Taylor: This is very good. It almost tastes like a barbecue sandwich. There is so much chili in here. This is delicious.

Kevin Reilly: My favorite is definitely the chili dog. I kind of like how it gets a little messy but also the dog itself is delicious. That grilled flavor on there is fantastic.

Alyssa Pagano: Oh, it’s actually spicier than I was expecting.

Kate Taylor: This is a very tasty chili cheese dog.

Alyssa Pagano: I’m just going to eat another one, because why not?

Kevin Reilly: And I’m going to have another bite because it’s really good.

The chili is smoked and slow-braised beef. It’s made with ancho and chile de árbol peppers. They’ll be serving it for a limited time, so get it while it’s hot.

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Business Insider is the fastest growing business news site in the US. Our mission: to tell you all you need to know about the big world around you. The BI Video team focuses on technology, strategy and science with an emphasis on unique storytelling and data that appeals to the next generation of leaders – the digital generation.