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According to a Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) survey of 2,153 Canadian homeowners, millennials are significantly more open to buying a home with an option for rental income, and some are already landlords.

The study found that 53 per cent of homeowners aged 18 – 34 would prefer to own a home with a rental income source, compared to 25 per cent of homeowners aged 55 and up (baby boomers). That’s an increase of over 50 per cent!

They also found that 47 per cent of millennial homeowners either are or plan to be landlords, compared to 29 per cent of owners between the ages of 35 – 54 and only 12 per cent of baby boomers.

Why the change? “There’s definitely a shift in attitudes and a growing interest in income properties,” said Scott McGillivray, a real estate investor and former host of the HGTV show Income Property. In a statement, McGillivray said this is mostly driven by the need for new homeowners to offset Canada’s high housing costs, but it can also be a smart way to build wealth.

Rental income can take many forms. For some young homeowners, this could mean purchasing a home with a built-in rental unit, such as a basement apartment or a duplex. It could also mean the option of renting out some (or all) of your home on a regular basis, such as using Airbnb, if permitted. Others might choose to invest in an entirely separate property, like a condo unit near a university or business district.

Either way, it’s clear that young Canadian homeowners haven’t given up the goal of having their own space. They’re just more likely to be creative about finding ways to finance it.

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