Have you ever heard the term “Silver Tsunami” and wondered what it’s all about? If so, that might be because there’s been lot of talk about it online recently. Let’s dive into what it is and why it won’t drastically impact the housing market.
What Does Silver Tsunami Mean?
A recent article from HousingWire calls it:
“. . . a colloquialism referring to aging Americans changing their housing arrangements to accommodate aging . . .”
The thought is that as baby boomers grow older, a significant number will start downsizing their homes. Considering how large that generation is, if these moves happened in a big wave, it would affect the housing market by causing a significant uptick in the number of larger homes for sale. That influx of homes coming onto the market would impact the balance of supply and demand and more.
The concept makes sense in theory, but will it happen? And if so, when?
Why It Won’t Have a Huge Impact on the Housing Market in 2024
Experts say, so far, a silver tsunami hasn’t happened – and it probably won’t anytime soon. According to that same article from HousingWire:
“. . . the silver tsunami’s transformative potential for the U.S. housing market has not yet materialized in any meaningful way, and few expect it to anytime soon.”
Here’s just one reason why. Many baby boomers don’t want to move. Data from the AARP shows over half of the surveyed adults ages 65 and up plan to stay put and age in place in their current home rather than move (see chart below):
Clearly, not every baby boomer is planning to sell or move – and even those who do won’t do it all at once. Instead, it will be more gradual, happening slowly over time. As Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American, says:
“Demographics are never a tsunami. The baby boomer generation is almost two decades of births. That means they’re going to take about two decades to work their way through.”
If you’re worried about a Silver Tsunami shaking up the housing market, don’t be. Any impact from baby boomers moving will be gradual over many years. Fleming sums it up best:
“Demographic trends, they don’t tsunami. They trickle.”
If you’re thinking about retirement or have already retired this year, it’s a good time to consider if your current house is still a good fit for the next chapter in your life.
Fortunately, you may be in a better position to make a move than you realize. Here are a few things to think about as you decide whether or not to sell and make a move.
How Long You’ve Been in Your Home
From 1985 to 2008, the average length of time homeowners typically stayed in their homes was only six years. But according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), that number is rising today, meaning many homeowners are living in their houses even longer (see graph below):
When you live in a home for a significant period of time, it’s natural for you to experience a number of changes in your life while you’re in that house. As those life changes and milestones happen, your needs may change. And if your current home no longer meets them, you may have better options waiting for you.
How Much Equity You’ve Gained
Additionally, if you’ve been in your house for more than a few years, you’ve likely built-up significant equity that can fuel your next move. That’s because the longer you’ve been in your house, the more likely it’s grown in value due to home price appreciation. Data from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) illustrates that point (see graph below):
While home price growth varies by state and local area, the national average shows the typical homeowner who’s been in their house for five years saw it increase in value by nearly 60%. And the average homeowner who’s owned their home since 1991 saw it more than triple in value over that time.
Consider Your Retirement Goals
Whether you’re looking to downsize, relocate to a dream destination, or simply be closer to loved ones, your home equity can be a key to realizing your homeownership goals. NAR shares that for recent home sellers, the primary reason to move was to be closer to loved ones.
Whatever your home goals are, a trusted real estate agent can work with you to find the best option. They’ll help you sell your current house and guide you through buying the home that’s right for your lifestyle today.
Retirement can bring about major changes in your life, including what you need from your home. Connect with a local real estate agent to explore the available homes in your area.
Does the rising cost of just about everything these days make your dream of owning your own home feel less within reach? According to Bankrate, many people are seeking additional income through side hustles, possibly to cope with those increasing expenses and save for a home. This trend is particularly popular with younger individuals who may be dealing with student loan debt (see graph below):
Here are two strategies that can not only make homeownership more affordable in the short term, but turn it into a lucrative side hustle that can pay off down the road.
Transforming the Challenge of a Fixer-Upper into an Opportunity
One thing you could do to help you break into homeownership is consider purchasing a fixer-upper. That’s a home that may be a bit less appealing and as a result has lingered on the market longer than normal. According to a recent article from U.S. News:
“The current state of the housing market may have you expanding your options to try to find a home that you can afford. A fixer-upper that needs some updating and a little love can feel like a welcome alternative to move-in ready houses that go off the market before you can even take a tour.”
By opting for a home that requires some work, you may see two big benefits. For starters, you may find it’s easier to find a home because you’re not looking for that perfect option. Plus, it may also help you enter the housing market at a lower price point. This strategy provides a more affordable way to become a homeowner while also offering the potential for future profits.
Yes, the home may need a little elbow grease, but investing time and effort into gradually enhancing your house not only makes it a home but also increases its future market value. So, while you enjoy the satisfaction of turning a house into a home, you’re also building equity that can be unlocked when it’s time to sell.
Renting Out a Portion of Your Home To Make It More Affordable
Another savvy strategy is to purchase a home with the upfront intention of renting out a portion of it. According to a recent press release from Zillow, renting out a part of their home is already very important for most young homebuyers (see graph below):
This approach serves a strong purpose. As Manny Garcia, Senior Population Scientist at Zillow, says:
“For those first-time buyers navigating the ‘side hustle culture,’ where a regular 9-to-5 might not quite cut it for homeownership dreams, rental income can step in to help . . .”
Basically, it can help you afford your monthly mortgage payments. So if you’re open to it, renting out a portion of your home not only helps with affordability, but it also positions you as an investor and turns your home into a source of income.
In the face of today’s affordability challenges, both of these strategies offer more attainable paths to homeownership, especially for younger buyers. If you want to discuss these options and see how they might play out for you in your local market, connect with a trusted real estate agent.
Maybe you’re in the market for a home and are having a hard time finding the right one that fits your budget. Or perhaps you’re already a homeowner in need of extra income or a place for loved ones. Whether as a potential homebuyer or a homeowner with changing needs, accessory dwelling units, or ADUs for short, may be able to help you reach your goals.
What Is an ADU?
As AARP says:
“An ADU is a small residence that shares a single-family lot with a larger, primary dwelling.”
“An ADU is an independent, self-contained living space with a kitchen or kitchenette, bathroom and sleeping area.”
“An ADU can be located within, attached to, or detached from the main residence. It can be created out of an existing structure (such as a garage) or built anew.”
If you’re thinking about whether an ADU makes sense for you as a buyer or a homeowner, here’s some useful information and benefits that ADUs can provide. Keep in mind, that regulations for ADUs vary based on where you live, so lean on a local real estate professional for more information.
The Benefits of ADUs
Freddie Mac and the AARP identify some of the best features of ADUs for both buyers and homeowners:
- Living Close by, But Still Separate: ADUs allow loved ones to live together while having separate spaces. That means you can enjoy each other’s company and help each other out with things like childcare, but also have privacy when needed. If this appeals to you, you may want to consider buying a home with an ADU or adding an ADU onto your house. According to Freddie Mac:
“Having an accessory dwelling unit on an existing property has become a popular way for homeowners to offer independent living space to family members.”
- Aging in Place: Similarly, ADUs allow older people to be close to loved ones who can help them if they need it as they age. It gives them the best of both worlds – independence and support from loved ones. For example, if your parents are getting older and you want them nearby, you may want to buy a home with an ADU or build one onto your existing house.
- Affordable To Build: Since ADUs are often on the smaller side, they’re typically less expensive to build than larger, standalone homes. Building one can also increase your property’s value.
- Generating Additional Income: If you own a home with an ADU or if you build an ADU on your land, it can help generate rental income you could use toward your own mortgage payments. It’s worth noting that because an ADU exists on a single-family lot as a secondary dwelling, it typically cannot be sold separately from the primary residence. But that’s changing in some states. Work with a professional to understand your options.
These are a few of the reasons why many people who benefit from ADUs think they’re a good idea. As Scott Wild, SVP of Consulting at John Burns Research, says:
“It’s gone from a small niche in the market to really a much more impactful part of new housing.”
ADUs have some great advantages for buyers and homeowners alike. If you’re interested, reach out to a real estate professional who can help you understand local codes and regulations for this type of housing and what’s available in your market
If you’re considering selling your house right now, it’s likely because something in your life has changed. And while things like mortgage rates play a big role in your decision, you don’t want that to overshadow why you thought about making a move in the first place.
It’s true mortgage rates are higher right now, and that has an impact on affordability. As a result, some homeowners are deciding they’ll wait to sell because they don’t want to move and have a higher mortgage rate on their next home.
But your lifestyle and your changing needs matter, too. As a recent article from Realtor.com says:
“No matter what interest rates and home prices do next, sometimes homeowners just have to move—due to a new job, new baby, divorce, death, or some other major life change.”
Here are a few of the most common reasons people choose to sell today. You may find any one of these resonates with you and may be reason enough to move, even today.
Some of the things that can motivate a move to a new area include changing jobs, a desire to be closer to friends and loved ones, wanting to live in your ideal location, or just looking for a change in scenery.
For example, if you just landed your dream job in another state, you may be thinking about selling your current home and moving for work.
Many homeowners decide to sell to move into a larger home. This is especially common when there’s a need for more room to entertain, a home office or gym, or additional bedrooms to accommodate a growing number of loved ones.
For example, if you’re living in a condo and your household is growing, it may be time to find a home that better fits those needs.
Homeowners may also decide to sell because someone’s moved out of the home recently and there’s now more space than needed. It could also be that they’ve recently retired or are ready for a change.
For example, you’ve just kicked off your retirement and you want to move somewhere warmer with less house to maintain. A different home may be better suited for your new lifestyle.
Change in Relationship Status
Divorce, separation, or marriage are other common reasons individuals sell.
For example, if you’ve recently separated, it may be difficult to still live under one roof. Selling and getting a place of your own may be a better option.
If a homeowner faces mobility challenges or health issues that require specific living arrangements or modifications, they might sell their house to find one that works better for them.
For example, you may be looking to sell your house and use the proceeds to help pay for a unit in an assisted-living facility.
With higher mortgage rates and rising prices, there are some affordability challenges right now – but your needs and your lifestyle matter too. As a recent article from Bankrate says:
“Deciding whether it’s the right time to sell your home is a very personal choice. There are numerous important questions to consider, both financial and lifestyle-based, before putting your home on the market. . . . Your future plans and goals should be a significant part of the equation . . .”
If you want to sell your house and find a new one that better fits your needs, get in touch with a real estate expert. They’ll be there to guide you through the process and help you find a home that works for you.
In today’s world of rising housing costs, many buyers are looking for ways to still be able to buy a home. Some of them have found a solution in multi-generational living.
Multi-generational living is when two or more adult generations live together under one roof. This includes siblings, parents, or even grandparents. Here’s an in-depth look at why more buyers are choosing this option today, so you can see if it may be right for you too.
Reasons To Buy a Multi-Generational Home
According to a recent study by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the top two reasons people are opting for multi-generational homes today have to do with affordability (see graph below):
Cost Savings: About 28% of first-time buyers and 11% of repeat buyers are deciding on a multi-generational home to save on costs. By pooling their resources, households can share the financial responsibilities like mortgage payments, utilities, property taxes, and maintenance, to make homeownership more affordable. This is especially helpful for first-time homebuyers who may be finding it tough to afford a home on their own in today’s market.
More Space: Another 28% of first-time buyers and 18% of repeat buyers are doing it because they want a larger home they couldn’t afford on their own. For some of the repeat buyers who listed this as a main motivator, it could be because they find themselves taking care of older parents while also welcoming back young adults who’ve returned to the nest. With everyone chipping in and combining their incomes, suddenly, that big dream home with more space is within reach. As the Triangle Business Journal explains:
“Choosing multi-gen living allows people to purchase a home much larger than they could afford on their own by leveraging the combined income, credit and a down payment of those that they will be occupying the home with.”
Lean on an Expert
If you’re interested in this too, partner with a local real estate agent. Finding the perfect multi-generational home isn’t as simple as shopping for a regular house. That’s because there are more people with even more opinions and needs that should be considered.
You’ve got to make sure everyone has their own space, find room for shared household time, and possibly even create adaptable areas for older relatives. It’s a puzzle, and the pieces need to fit just right. Your real estate agent has the expertise and local knowledge to help you find that home where everyone can be comfortable without breaking the bank. As MoneyGeek.com puts it:
“Having a good multigenerational property can improve the prospects of success when living with loved ones. A multigenerational home should fit the specific needs of most family members regardless of age or health. Speaking to a real-estate agent can help you gain clarity and locate a fit.”
Buying a multi-generational home can be a smart way to tackle some of today’s affordability challenges. When you team up to share expenses, you can make your dream of homeownership more attainable. If this sounds like an option for you and your loved ones, connect with a local real estate agent to help you find a home that’s the perfect fit.