NewsCovering Kern County


Bakersfield rated one of the top places for millennials to live, purchase homes

Posted at 5:55 PM, Apr 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-30 20:58:23-04

BAKERSFIELD,Calif. — A new report from the National Association of Realtors rates Bakersfield in their top cities to live in for millennials.

According to the report, in 2017, 67 percent of people who moved to Bakersfield were millennials who bought homes.

Michelle Oliver, a millennial first time home buyer, says buying was a more affordable option for her.

“It was a good investment to buy a home and I like to see people my age catching on to that trend,” said Oliver. “It was always my goal at my young age to buy a home, but I never thought I could do it”.

Oliver believes that more millennials could be on the way here, once they find out how affordable it is compared to other cities in California.

“From renting an apartment here to buying a house it wasn’t that expensive,” said Oliver. "To me it was the benefit of having my own space and not having such proximity to neighbors."

According to the National Association of Realtors report in 2017 millennials who recently moved to Bakersfield purchased almost 15 percent of homes listed, compared to four percent in Los Angeles.

"I would say at least 20 percent of our buyers are young in thirties and late 20s and starting their career here,” said William Gordon, realtor at Watson Realty.

“Maybe they even rented for a few years to feel out to see it’s the right place for them.”

With over a decade in this market, Gordon, agrees that the millennials are coming here for location, affordability and job opportunity.

“What we see is a lot of boomers downsizing and millennials who already own are buying their second home in that next tier that 500,000 range,” said Gordon.

Another report, released byZumper, says it’s nearly as cheap to buy a home in Bakersfield compared to renting. Zumper showed Bakersfield moved up to the 77th priciest city to rent in last month.

In just one month, the report states “that a one-bedroom rent jumped by 5.4 percent and that it was the largest monthly growth rate in the nation.”

"A lot of young professionals that move to Bakersfield for certain industries as far as oil, gas, and agriculture find that home ownership is so affordable here that its almost the same as renting,” said Gordon.

Oliver says that the millennials will have further impact towards the housing market.

“I think having your own piece of land and house to live in is exciting and I think it's definitely help expand the market for people who are wanting to purchase homes,” added Oliver.

The National Association of Realtors report also indicates that 28 percent of residents in Bakersfield are millennials as well.