The Dynamics of Baby Boomers and their Homes

baby boomersMost people define that Baby Boomer generation as those born between 1946 and 1964. Which puts them in the age range today between 50 and 68. As with any generation, there are people with varying degrees of financial security. Which means different things regarding how boomers view their homes.  Let’s take a deeper look at a few different trends.

Second Homes

Boomers between 50 and 59 with the financial means buy second homes. Their children are teenagers or older, and the concept of vacations in a second home with lots of activities is appealing.  Others may be looking to diversify their assets for the future by buying a rental property. This rental property can provide additional sources of income in the future.

Regardless of the reasons, managing a second home requires the boomer to have a system to keep up with the maintenance. Keeping all the records of both the primary home and the second home are important. Especially, to stay on top of this diversified real estate portfolio. This becomes more challenging if this home is not near their current home. If a second property requires travel to maintain the property, then staying on top of the details will be critical.

Aging in Place

A big trend for boomers is not to move to a retirement community, but to remain in the current home. This decision often times kicks off a renovation trend to re-configure the home based on retirement needs. Boomers are also deciding to work longer. And many are taking on part time consulting type of projects with a home office.

With these dynamics, popular remodel projects include home offices to accommodate working from home, first floor bedrooms and bathrooms to eliminate daily stair use, and wider doors and hallways to accommodate mobility devices if they become necessary. In addition, configuring a spare bedroom and bathroom for a caregiver is popular. Even technology updates is gaining in popularity.

With these remodeling projects, boomers are in a position to secure a planning and management system to manage the budget. A system that can also manage the shopping research for what products and brands to consider, and tracking actual costs. It is also a good idea to keep before and after photos, as well as, all the documents, receipts, and owner’s manuals for future tax or resale purposes.

Downsizing and Estate Planning

Many boomers will also choose to downsize their homes to reduce expenses and or to get some equity out of the home as savings for future health care or travel expenses.  Some of the goals of downsizing include smaller homes with less landscaping.  But moving into a new home still means learning about the new home and creating a maintenance schedule to keep up with what needs to get done.

With downsizing often times comes the thought of formalizing estate planning.  Aside from liquid financial assets, many estate plans include taking an inventory of your personal possessions and determining who they will go to.  The new downsized home is also a consideration when it comes to estate planning.

Boomers using Technology

Although baby boomers were not born with technology, it is a misnomer to think they are not using technology today.  According to PEW Research, over 43% of boomers are using social networking sites, primarily facebook.  And a survey by MacAfee shows boomers spending about 4.5 hours online daily, 9 in 10 have made purchases online, 8 in 10 accessed online banking, and 75% paid bills online.

With boomers needs for managing different aspects of their homes and their embrace of technology, online systems like HomeZada can be a good fit.  HomeZada helps people manage a maintenance schedule and calendar, keep an electronic home inventory, and manage home improvement projects all in one place.  Boomers can also manage home finances and multiple homes in one account.