The real estate market is in a bit of turmoil because Boomers — who are downsizing to match their new retirement lifestyles — are having a difficult time selling their homes to the current generation of homebuyers, Millennials. There are several reasons why this situation has developed the way it has, but here are two things Boomers can do to make their homes more palatable to Millennials and make the sale.
Take Out the Bells and Whistles
Every generation has its own sense of style and way of doing things, and Millennials aren't any different. One reason why Boomer homes are languishing on the market is because Millennials just aren't into the house designs that appealed to people of their parents' (or grandparents') generation.
Whereas Boomers liked elaborate styles and fancy architectural details, Millennials have veered towards homes with simple, minimalist designs and open, free-flowing interiors. Part of this is due to a fundamental shift in values. It's no secret the Baby Boomer generation focused on amassing wealth, and purchased homes that reflected their financial achievement. Millennials, on the other hand, are less interested in material possessions and more enticed by life experiences (e.g. travel).
Thus, if you want to get Millennials to take interest in your home, you need to strip out the crown molding, Greek columns, and other ornate details and substitute them for cleaner, more modern elements that don't require a lot of maintenance. Knock down a wall or two to create an open-concept design, update the appliances, and paint the walls neutral colors, such as taupe or pale grey.
If you're not sure how best to redesign your home for a Millennial buyer, talk to a real estate agent from that generation or who has extensive experience selling to them for advice.
Help with Financing
Another reason Millennials aren't flocking to Boomer homes is because they can't afford them. This generation is toiling under the weight of $497 billion in student loan debt. Unfortunately, well-paying jobs aren't as plentiful as they used to be, and everything in general is just more expensive. So, your average Millennial doesn't have the capital to purchase homes at prices Boomers want to sell them.
However, you may still be able to capture the attention of some Millennial buyers by offering financial assistance. This could be something as simple as paying closing costs or as much as providing seller-funded down payment or even outright seller financing. Although making these types of concession may cut into your profits a bit, it's better than having your property sit vacant for months or years on end waiting for a buyer.
For more home selling tips or help finding buyers for residential houses, contact a real estate agent.