ELI5: The millennial generation appears to be so much poorer than those of their parents. For most, ever owning a house seems unlikely, and even car ownership is much less common. What exactly happened to cause this?

It's not a homogenous issue. Owning a house for me is a realistic goal right now, but I don't live in New York. Our problems aren't the same issues that New York has, but we have our own.

I've never lived in a BIG city like New York, but the problems there are really quite obvious in my mind. Very pricy and desireable property, stagnant wages, and very high cost of education leading to tons of people in debt.

As someone that lives in Winnipeg, which isn't on the top of many peoples' places to live, im making upwards of 55,000/yr pre-taxes after a 2.5 year community college degree. If I wanted a house, I could afford one here. I have friends that own houses here that make far less than I do, that never went to post-secondary.

but our problem here is foreign investment. In contrast to the US stereotype of "Dey terk er jerbs", it's "They took hour laand, eh? (booat)". There's a TON of foreign nationals right now (mostly Chinese) buying up properties all over Winnipeg, causing the cost of real estate to go up and up and up. Winnipeg is no silicon valley, and unless the government stops this from happening in some form, people my age are soon going to be priced out of the market in favor of foreigners who purchase houses just for the land, never even living in them. Our wages aren't that high in general since we don't have that many hugely profitable companies that can afford to shell out.

This is (i believe, correct me if im wrong) the same thing that happened in Vancouver, except that Vancouver is a much more desirable place to live than Winnipeg, and continues to be so. Tons of foreign investment prices out domestic inhabitants, and so you get stuff like million dollar crackhouses.

That's not nearly the case yet here in Winnipeg, but it's down the pipeline if nothing changes. We've been waiting for the real estate bubble to burst for a decade, but it's not going to happen if foreign nationals keep propping up the price (this will only get worse with the dollar weakening).

With the same skillset, I could be making much more in an urban center in the US, but I would also be paying far more in cost of living. I probably wouldn't survive with my current wage in, say, palo alto.

/r/explainlikeimfive Thread