Do baby boomers move?


It is fascinating to read articles about baby boomers and moving. Traditionally the age group that current boomers are in doesn’t really move around that much.

Younger people are far more likely to move. In general older people do not move anywhere as frequently as younger people do. People between the ages of 18-35 are far more likely to move than a baby boomer is. According to a study done by the National Association of Realtors:

“The typical buyer was 42-years-old, while the typical first-time buyer was 31 and the typical repeat buyer was 52”

I found an article and a study that shows peak moving time for most is when they are in their 20’s and that the likely hood of moving declines steeply until about 50 or 55 and then remains flat. Probably a good thing considering that if boomers moved in large numbers we would have too many homes on the market. However if large numbers of us stay put that could have the opposite effect.

There were several articles written in 2013 about how baby boomers are going to move to the city and several that state with some authority that boomers are going to move to small towns and others that state boomers just love exurban areas and suburbs.

I am a baby boomer. On the younger end of the boom and this year I have worked with some baby boomers as a St. Paul real estate agent. Some have been buyers and others sellers.

Most often I work with baby boomers who are moving because of a divorce not because they are baby boomers. I don’t work with many baby boomers who are moving because they are empty nesters and the house is too big but that could be because the typical house in the inner city isn’t that huge.

In the last couple of years I have worked with some older baby boomers who are moving into the city and who moved to St. Paul from someplace else and bought condos or smaller homes.

Clearly the habits of my generation matter. We represent a large demographic and staying on top of trends is important for those of us who sell real estate.

My best guess is boomers are going to do what they have always done which is the unexpected because we can. Some of us will age in place because we don’t want to leave the communities where we raised our children and where our friends live. The trend of not moving around much as we age may stay in place.

We will work until we are at least in our 70’s even though age discrimination will still be alive and well businesses will need our experience, and we will be able to work as contractors or as part time employees.

Others will move to small towns or even to the suburbs. Some will enjoy life in 55+ co-ops and others won’t want to have anything to do with living near old people.