Baby Boomers Are Having Trouble Selling Their Big Suburban Homes

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Millennials are buying homes, but they want what downsizing Boomers now want: Smaller homes with nicer amenities in denser neighborhoods

June 07, 2017

Photo: SanjibLemar/Wikimedia Commons

Millennials are the nation’s largest group of homebuyers, but they aren’t interested in the houses that Baby Boomers are looking to sell.

Realtor.com reports that the housing market has an imbalance, as both younger and older buyers are interested in smaller homes with nicer features and amenities, such as nice countertops, upscale appliances, and open floor plans. Both groups also want homes in dense, lively neighborhoods with nearby restaurants, shops, and attractions.

Boomers out in the sleepy suburbs are having problems selling their spacious McMansions. Many Millennials struggling with increasing student loan debt can’t afford big homes. Gen Xers are also uninterested, as people in that group are busy with saving for their retirement and their kids’ college fund.

Baby Boomers with McMansions aren’t eager to sell at a discount, so they may have to stay put.

"There certainly was a lot of speculation about what would happen if the boomers tried to sell their houses en masse, and whether that would flood the market with a supply of large homes that the younger population didn’t want—or couldn’t afford—to buy," Porter says. But "the boomers do seem to be moving less and aging in place more."

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