The Future. Boomers became the biggest home buyers in America once again by taking advantage of low-interest rates, the ability to leverage equity for down payments, and the rise of remote work. While this has set millennials (who are in their prime home-buying years) back a step, the demographic shift may be a short-lived phenomenon. Boomers may have just been trying to get the best deal for their retirement property while they could.
How did boomers take control of the housing market from millennials just as it was their time to realize the American dream?
- Between July 2021 and June 2022, boomers purchased 39% of all homes sold last year.
- 51% of those aged 68-76 were able to make all-cash offers thanks to equity they had in their previous property.
Meanwhile, millennials only scored 28% of homes and had to rely on either family or friends for down payments or take out high-interest loans. Only 6% of those under 32 paid all in cash.
What’s making matters worse is that, although millennials represented 72.1 million Americans in 2019, homebuilders had only built 21,000 single-family homes per 1 million people each year for the past decade — half as many as the three decades before that.
A growing millennial population up against a dearth of affordable starter homes was a recipe for scarcity and insane competition… even without the demand from boomers.