- Millennials and baby boomers tend to make different lifestyle choices, from marriage and family to how they spend their money.
- The two generations also have different tastes in homes.
- Millennials aren’t buying the large, elaborate houses built by boomers in Sunbelt states like Arizona, Florida, and the Carolinas, Candace Taylor reported for The Wall Street Journal.
- These houses end up sitting on the market and selling at massive price cuts.
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It’s well documented that millennials tend to make different lifestyle choices than baby boomers do, from waiting longer to get married and have children to spending their money on health, wellness, and experiences rather than material goods.
But boomers and millennials also want very different types of houses, and it’s creating a major problem in the real-estate market.
Fifteen years ago, boomers were building large, elaborate houses in states like Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina, Candace Taylor reported for The Wall Street Journal earlier this year. Now, faced with the effort of maintaining such houses, they’re looking to downsize.
“Homes built before 2012 are selling at steep discounts – sometimes almost 50%, and many owners end up selling for less than they paid to build their homes,” Taylor wrote.
Boomers are looking to downsize, but millennials aren’t interested in their huge houses
“These days, buyers of all ages eschew the large, ornate houses built in those years in favour of smaller, more modern-looking alternatives, and prefer walkable areas to living miles from retail,” Taylor wrote.
Younger buyers are also uninterested in outdated interior design.
“Design trends have shifted radically in the past decade,” Taylor wrote. “That means a home with crown moldings, ornate details and Mediterranean or Tuscan-style architecture can be a hard sell, while properties with clean lines and open floor plans get snapped up.”
Another hurdle for boomers looking to sell is that most younger buyers want to buy modern, newly constructed homes to avoid paying for renovations or plumbing and electric issues, according to a 2018 report from Nationwide Mortgage.
Thanks to crushing student loan debt and rising prices, it’s much harder for millennials to buy homes at all
Millennials are often seen as a generation of renters, but many of them want to buy homes – it’s just much harder for them to do so.
Millennialsbuying their first home today are likely to pay 39% more than baby boomers who bought their first home in the 1980s, Business Insider’s Hillary Hoffower previously reported. And there’s a limited supply of starter homes on the market, which is causing prices to shoot up.
The millennial generation is also working on paying off record levels of student-loan debt, making it difficult to take on a mortgage loan.
In lieu of traditional multi-bedroom homes favoured by baby boomers, millennials love alternative living situations such as tiny homes, which are much cheaper and can offer a unique, flexible lifestyle.
When millennials can finally afford to buy a home, it makes sense that they’d hold out for something that’s exactly to their taste.
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