The economy has rocked the foundation of the boom generation, who are delaying plans to sell their homes, according to a recent Coldwell Banker Real Estate survey of 1,300 agents and brokers.
The boom generation “has driven the U.S. economy for years, and like many Americans, they may be anxious about their next real estate decision,” Jim Gillespie, CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate, said in a statement.
The boom generation is usually portrayed as one, monolithic 79 million-strong demographic. But the survey found different attitudes toward real estate between younger (ages 47-55) and older (56-64) boomers. Nearly a third of respondents (31 percent) said that younger boomer clients are selling their current residences and looking for larger homes while only 6 percent of surveyed agents reported older boomers are looking to upgrade.
Conversely, 80 percent of agents said that older boomers want to downsize. Money is not the overriding issue (just over a quarter said their clients were motivated by finances). Nearly half (49 percent) of agents said their older clients wanted to simplify their lives. Meanwhile, 52 percent of agents reported their younger clients shared this desire.
Vacation homes, second homes and investment properties are more appealing to younger boomers, the survey found. Older boomers, again, perhaps looking to simplify or simply in response to the depressed house market, are not as interested in acquiring additional real estate. They have an increasing interest in condos or townhomes, which require less maintenance and upkeep, or in active adult retirement communities.
Eighty-two percent of agents said that their younger boomer clients are in the market for a single family home.
Nearly three-quarters of boomers know someone who has had trouble selling their home, according to a survey of investors condusted last month by Millionaire Corner. But they do see opportunity in the real estate market. Nearly 60 percent of respondents between the ages of 51-60 think it is a good time to buy compared to just over half of those over the age of 60.