Modern newlyweds wish they’d registered for a down payment

by Emily Marek

Today’s newly married couples wish they’d forgone traditional wedding registries in favor of financial contributions towards the purchase of a home, according to a survey from Realtor.com® and Censuswide.

Of survey respondents who made a wedding registry in the past two years, 85% said they would have preferred to receive money they could have used towards a down payment, mortgage payment or other associated homebuying costs.

Despite this admission, 82% said they felt obligated to go the traditional route, registering for home furnishings and dishware, etc. Another 88% said they registered for gifts they really didn’t want, while a smaller 35% said they planned on returning the gifts they received to use for money.

This goes both ways, though: the same respondents also said they’ve felt obligated to bring a traditional gift as a wedding guest, with 70% saying they’d prefer to do so over financial contributions.

However, survey responses also indicated that the times are changing when it comes to wedding gifts. Over 70% of responders who created a registry in the past two years included an option for guests to contribute financially towards a large gift, like a honeymoon or a down payment. Stigma around this practice still exists though, with 22% saying they would have liked to include this option on their registry but didn’t for one reason or another.

“Over the past few years, homebuyers have been facing a number of challenges, most notably around affordability due to high home prices and mortgage rates,” said Clare Trapasso, executive news editor for Realtor.com®. “We’re seeing buying get creative with how they cobble together the necessary financials, from tapping into down-payment assistance programs to asking for help from family and friends.”

“Adding a homebuying gift option to a wedding registry is a great way for people to crowd-source these often hard-to-come-by funds,” Trapasso added. “It allows their loved ones to celebrate one of the biggest moments of their lives while helping them to achieve homeownership.”

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