Zweiacker & Associates

Boomers Get Back to the Basics


During the National Association of Home Builders meeting in Orlando, Florida, many builders met to discuss getting “back to the basics”.  While the need for a variety in housing is obvious as people enter into different stages in their lives, it is important for builders to look at overall trends in the population. With around 77 million Baby Boomers to keep in mind, the home builders met to discuss the age group and their housing needs.

What was the verdict? Douglas Van Lerberghe, land planner in Denver, recently said “We have an opportunity to rethink a lot of the things that we’ve done”. He has developed with Boomers in mind in the past, and as they reach retirement age, the focus has shifted to a desire for simplified housing.  Van suggests that successful developments are scaling back 200-400 square feet. With the recent recession and dwindling retirement, some Baby Boomers will be working a little longer than they had originally anticipated.

Well, they decided that retiring Boomers would be looking for a simplified home, one with less square footage, basic community amenities, and even age-restricted developments. Van Lerberghe claimed that along with retirement, the recession caused Boomers to have less money than they used to.

This leads to a simplified housing investment, one where essentials are key, and frills take the back seat. Panelists of the Home Builder conference stated that walking trails were the top amenity desired by this age group. Additionally, interest in fitness centers, gated access communities, and space for an in-home office were on the list of desirable home traits.

Original article written by the Chicago Tribune



Leave a Reply