Younger Generations Spend More on Housing

Interesting Article from our Realtor Magazine;

Survey: Younger Generations Spend More on Housing

(May 10, 2006) -- A recent survey of home buyers in three generations — Gen Y (those born between 1979 and 1994), Gen X (born between 1978 and 1965), and baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1965) — show that the two younger generations are outspending boomers in their first home purchase.

Both of the younger generations also devote a larger portion of their salaries to housing costs, according to the survey, conducted by Century 21 Real Estate. The goal of the survey was to understand and compare the experiences of the first-home purchase among members of three different generations.

Unlike boomers who purchased their first homes in response to life events such as a marriage or birth, financial incentives motivate both Gen X and Gen Y buyers with investment value cited as the “key driver” by the Century 21 survey with 42 percent of Gen X respondents and 39 percent of Gen Y respondents citing a “safe investment” as the reason for purchase.

A similar business-like approach is applied to the home search and purchase. “These guys don’t get caught up in the process. They’re very bottom-line oriented and results oriented,” says John Tuccillo, former NAR chief economist and principal of John Tuccillo Associates, an economics and business consulting firm in Virginia.

“Don’t expect them to fall in love with the property,” he cautions. “What matters is whether the house works for them and whether it’s a good deal.”

“Real estate professionals shouldn’t only get to know this group, they should also begin to look at their own materials, particularly Web sites, from the perspective of this demographic,” Tuccillo says.

A higher proportion of younger buyers use the Internet. For Gen Y it ranked as the primary source of home shopping information according to the survey. Experts such as Tuccillo and Melody Bohrer, vice president for education for ERA Real Estate say that being able to remain anonymous while they gather information is a top criterion for younger buyers.

Less relationship oriented than boomers, younger buyers are also more likely than boomers to say “next” if a salesperson doesn’t meet their expectations. However, Bohrer says, “They will be loyal if you work the way they want.”

By Camilla McLaughlin for REALTOR® Magazine Online

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