How Different Generations Buy & Sell Real Estate

05/15/2018

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Odds are, if you’ve been in the market for your dream home lately, it’s been a rather difficult process. A big reason for this is that the housing inventory had been reaching historic lows all across the United States, which makes the competition for those homes more intense as a result.

According to analysis from Zillow, there are around 3% fewer homes now than there were just a year ago. Not only that, but homes are spending less and less time on the market. In hot markets like Seattle, homes spend even less time on the market. This is causing many homeowners to hold off on putting their homes on sale so that they can avoid entering this competitive market space.

A big change that’s ended up having a significant effect on the market is millennials, which is currently the nation’s largest living generation. Millennials are starting to buy homes for the first time and studies show that they make up around 42% of all homebuyers, whether it’s their first time or not. As a result of this, the millennials and baby boomers are now competing for the same types of homes. But of course, there are some big differences between the two groups.

In general, the life of your average millennial is rapidly changing, and the prospective homes they’re interested in aim to match that. This can lead to millennials sometimes overestimating what they’re able to afford in terms of housing. Baby boomers on the other hand are much more likely to consider downsizing as their households typically don’t have more than a few people since their kids have grown to adults. Millennials are oftentimes looking for something more affordable than anything else. Baby boomers are more patient and willing to wait around for a perfect opportunity to present itself.

In the end, both groups have found hardship competing against one another in such a competitive market place, and we’re likely to see even more rapid changes to the market if things continue in the same direction they’re going in now.