Four Takeaways from NAR’s New Generational Trends Report

The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) recently released its latest report on Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends for 2023, reviewing market trends for 2022. Check out our summary of four major takeaways from this year’s report and what they mean for the real estate industry:

1. Baby Boomers overtook Millennials as the largest demographic of home buyers, making up 39 percent of the market in 2022, compared to 29 percent in 2021. They also remained the largest demographic of home sellers, jumping from 42 percent in 2021 to 52 percent in 2022.

One reason for this rise is, as NAR deputy chief economist Dr. Jessica Lautz explains, "Baby Boomers have the upper hand in the homebuying market. The majority of them are repeat buyers who have housing equity to propel them into their dream home…[and] they are living healthier and longer and making housing trades later in life.” Younger Boomers (ages 58-67 in 2022) may be seeking larger multigenerational homes or are choosing to move closer to family and friends, while Older Boomers (ages 68-76) may be seeking less property maintenance responsibility as they enter retirement.

2. First-time buyers made up only 26 percent of all home buyers, a sharp decrease from 34 percent last year, and the lowest number since NAR began tracking data in 2013. Seventy percent of Younger Millennials (ages 24-32) and 46 percent of Older Millennials (ages 33-42) were first-time home buyers. Behind these groups, 21 percent of Gen Xers (ages 43-57) were also first-time home buyers.

3. When relocating, all generations are moving farther distances, with Millennials typically moving the shortest distance of just 15 miles and Younger Boomers moving the furthest of 90 miles. The most common reason for such a move is to be closer to family and friends.

4. Gen Z (ages 18-23) now makes up 4 percent of buyers, an increase from 2 percent in 2021. Thirty percent of Gen Z buyers are moving directly from a family member’s home into their own first home and many are relying on family support systems to make the purchase. Gen Z also surprisingly expects to reside in their first home for 19 years, a much-longer stint than previous generations. As the most internet-savvy and climate-conscious generation, Gen Z buyers have likely done their research and are seeking a home that will sustain them for as long as possible. One thing is for sure: this generation is no longer “statistically irrelevant” and is gaining traction in the market.

Industry professionals can continue to cater to each generation by using data to create a good first impression, understanding and honoring customer preferences, and offering care and respect to the values and needs of each. For example, Baby Boomers will appreciate careful assistance with paperwork and inspections, touring areas that offer criteria that they value (e.g., affordability, lower tax rates, ample access to health care, moderate climates and low crime rates) and personalized touches, such as a hand-written thank-you note upon closing. For more ideas, check out our flyer on understanding generational trends.

There’s a reason countless Americans have relied on Old Republic Title for over a century. Through changing markets and generational trends, we continue to offer personalized service and a variety of title insurance resources designed to help our customers protect one of their biggest investments. Whenever you’re ready to buy or sell your home, Old Republic Title will be there to help.


Copyright ©2023 “Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report 2023.” NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. March 28, 2023.