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NAR Survey of Generational Trends Shows Younger Buyers More Optimistic

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The previous living arrangement of recent buyers varied greatly across the generations; among Millennials, 65 percent rented an apartment or house and 22 percent lived with their parents, relatives or friends; more than half of all Baby Boomer and Silent Generation buyers owned their previous residence.

The study found that older generations of homebuyers prefer more recently built homes. Millennials typically bought homes built around 1986, nearly a decade older than the homes typically bought by the Silent Generation.

Younger buyers had a tendency to stay closer to their previous residence, often staying within 10 miles, whereas older buyers moved longer distances, typically more than 20 miles from their previous home.

Younger buyers were more likely to buy in an urban or central city area than older buyers; 21 percent of Millennials bought a home in an urban location compared to only 13 percent of Older Boomer and Silent Generation buyers.

The reason for buying a home also varies across the generations; younger buyers most often cited the desire to own a home of their own whereas older buyers wanted to be closer to family and friends. When it comes to factors influencing neighborhood choice, younger generations cited convenience to jobs, affordability of homes, and quality of the school district. Older generations placed higher importance on convenience to family and friends and healthcare facilities.

When it comes to a home’s green features, younger buyers placed higher importance on commuting costs than older generations who placed higher importance on a home’s energy efficient features and living in an environmentally friendly community.

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