Let me summarize for you some of the key findings from a National Association of Realtors report on home buyer and seller generational trends. So often, useful facts get lost in big reports.
13% multigenerational living. 13% of buyers have multiple generations over the age of 18, with 21% of those buyers headed by someone aged in their 50s. This ties in nicely with our last Consumer Insights survey of more than 20K home shoppers, where 50% of those in their 50s said they planned on living multigenerationally, either with a parent or a child. 37% of multigenerational buyers had an adult child, while 21% of buyers had an aging parent.
73% couples. Married people buy 65% of all homes sold, with unmarried couples buying 8%.
16% single women double the men. Single women are almost twice as likely to buy as single men, purchasing 16% of all homes sold compared to 9% of all homes for single men. After the age of 50, purchases by single females rise even more.
65% childless. Homes designed for adults rather than families make more sense, as 65% of all home buyers do not have children. Resale homes were primarily designed with families in mind.
11% foreign born. Consistent with our demographic findings that 23% of those
born in the 1970s were born abroad and that foreign born buyers are less prone to purchase, foreign purchases are heavily skewed to those born in the 1970s. 17% of buyers aged 35–49 are foreign born—nearly double the percentage of any other age cohort.
Changing Buying Habits
43% finding their home online. 43% of buyers found the home they purchased online, ranging from 51% of those aged under 35 to 34% of those aged 60–68.
25%+ of Gen X and Gen Y buyers finding their home on their smartphone. More than half of Gen X and Gen Y used a mobile device in their search, and more than 25% found the home they purchased on their mobile device—meaning 75% did not.
Young Buyer Profile (under 35)
Mostly first-time buyers. Young buyers comprised 32% of all buyers, and 68% of the buyers under age 35 purchased their first home.
Less desire to renovate. Younger buyers who chose a new home did so to avoid to renovation headaches, while older buyers (60+) were slightly more likely to be drawn to new homes by the amenities.
Convenience trumps affordability. Consistent with our demographic findings that today’s young buyers value their time more than prior generations at the same age, young buyers buy for job convenience (74%), affordability (58%), schools (44%) and parks (28%), in that order. Older buyers placed far less importance on these factors.
Big Differences between Move-Up and Move-Down Buyersa
Younger move-up buyers sold at a tidy profit to buy a larger home, while older move-down buyers sold at a small loss to buy a smaller home. The key stats by age are as follows: