The share of baby boomers has surpassed millennials and now makes up the largest generation of home buyers, according to the latest study from the National Association of Realtors®.
The 2023 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends report, which examines the similarities and differences of recent home buyers and sellers across generations, found that the combined share of younger boomer (58 to 67 years old) and older boomer buyers (68 to 76 years old) rose to 39% in 2022, up from 29% the year prior.
Younger millennials (24 to 32 years old) and older millennials (33 to 42 years old) have been the top group of buyers since 2014, but they saw their combined share fall from 43% in 2021 to 28% last year.
“Baby boomers have the upper hand in the homebuying market,” said Dr. Jessica Lautz, NAR deputy chief economist and vice president of research. “The majority of them are repeat buyers who have housing equity to propel them into their dream home – be it a place to enjoy retirement or a home near friends and family. They are living healthier and longer and making housing trades later in life.”
Twenty-six percent of all buyers were first-time buyers, the lowest since NAR began tracking the data and a decrease from 34% last year. Seventy percent of younger millennials and 46% of older millennials were first-time buyers. Behind these groups, only 21% of Generation X (43 to 57 years old) and 9% of younger boomers were first-time purchasers. Generation Z – ages 18 to 23 – now makes up 4% of home buyers, a slight increase from 2% in 2021. Nearly one in three Gen Z buyers – 30% – moved directly from a family member’s home into homeownership. Finding a location convenient to friends and family was most important to this cohort of buyers.