Mortgage lenders have been waiting patiently as Millennials (a.k.a. Gen Y) are beginning to take advantage of the opportunities in the housing market as they approach their 30s. This group has delayed their entry into the housing market due to high unemployment and student loan debt.

For years now, they have lived in their parents' homes or rented properties not quite fitting of their own desires. But now they are lining up on the water's edge and starting to take the plunge into purchasing their first homes.

A recent article in USA Today suggests GenY is finally in a mood to buy (houses) explains that Millennials are surprisingly well-versed in the ways of real estate. They are evaluating the rent-versus-buy equation and seeing that buying a home is to their advantage So, what does this mean for your CU?

With the Millennial generation approaching its prime income-generating years, there are three ways your credit union can connect with this largest generation in history (est. 90 million) for maximum business potential now and well into the future. Your credit union must position itself to connect with Millennials to capitalize on this massive demographic's lending potential. Listed below are three ways you can:

First, educate them in the opportunities available in home buying. Provide rent vs. buy calculators to help them see the savings in purchasing a home. First-time homebuyer seminars are a huge help in getting them motivated and setting proper expectations. Plus, guiding them to understand the availability the market currently holds by building equity will encourage them.

Product availability is a requirement. Often, most Millennials don't have large sums of cash at their disposal and yet don't want to delay their housing needs to save a large down payment either. FHA is still a low down payment option for them and if you aren't offering this product you must realize the necessity it is as this generation has a growing need for lending assistance.


Tech Solustions A Must

Technology solutions are a must for Millennials. They want their needs met on demand-even with home lending. An online home loan application provides them the opportunity to apply online when they want and need. Make it quickly accessible and easy, and they're hooked.

Don't get left behind with this massive surge of buyers. It's not too late to make some of these key changes to ensure that when they are ready to buy a new home they know their local credit union has everything they need to achieve this major lifetime milestone.

Linda Clampitt is senior vice president with CU Members Mortgage and can be reached at