Real estate professionals have been focused lately on getting more Millennials to buy homes. The most interesting part of this focus is that baby boomers are the second largest demographic in our nation to buy homes. There has not been much help to offer baby boomer supportive strategies to guide them through a sale whether they are downsizing or resizing as they transform their lifestyles. The Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report says that Millennials make up the largest pool of homebuyers in the U.S. at whopping 32 percent, but…baby boomers are only 1 percent less than millennials at 31 percent for home purchases! I am going to share several strategies to educate you about what to expect as you go through a home sale and perhaps a new purchase as a baby boomer. Even more interesting is that baby boomers represent 43 percent of home sellers today, which is far higher than the millennial numbers for home sales.
• As the boomer population ages many of their real estate sales will be more complicated due to changes in their lifestyles. More boomers will be selling their homes due to aging, illness, the death of a loved one and because they are relocating to move closer to their family or to live with them.
• Additionally, many family members will be more involved in the sale of their parent’s homes due to a parent’s incapacity or the plan to move them into assisted living to take better care of them.
• One complication occurs when an estate plan dictate that the home is to be sold after a family member passes on. These sales are often filled with high emotions between family members, fighting over the decision to sell and how the executor divides up the parent’s estate.
Baby boomers may also experience more stress during the real estate transaction:
• Baby boomers often experience more stress than they originally anticipated due to changes in their lifestyles. You will want to plan ahead for this stress before you begin putting the home on the market.
• If you plan on buying another home, you will want to plan far in advance for the sale and the purchase of the new home since there are so many decisions and activities you need to complete before you end up moving to your new home.
• If it has been a while since you have been in the real estate market, you will also want to know what to expect before you start the process to avoid frustration, fear and fatigue.
• You may feel overwhelmed as you begin resolving any special requirements to help manage changes in you or your partner’s health, such as a one story home or space for hospital equipment in the new home.
• The sale of the your home and the transition into a new living space can be filled with many hard decisions and physical exhaustion. As a baby boomer, you may feel young at heart, but your body may be telling you something completely different.
• Pace yourself, because moving requires so much physical labor. Home preparations require a lot from you emotionally too, because you are sorting, packing, donating, and saving items you want to move and get rid of. You may feel sad and experience grief as you give up some or all of your independence, and you accept the need to rely on others for help.
• All family members may be emotional and edgy as they help you with the hard decisions throughout the sales process.
• Even if you do not have dramatic changes in health, it is still very stressful for anyone selling a home to make numerous decisions about repairs, renovation, what to fix and what to just give credit for during the sale. This becomes time consuming and exhausting as well.
• Take the time to estimate how long it will take you to go through every room in your home, garage and storage units to clean them out, donating items, organizing and packing them up. Then multiply your estimate by at least 2 times more because it always takes longer than you anticipate to complete the packing portion of the sale.
• Get started immediately on your home preparations, so you are not racing to finish repairs while you are closing escrow. And you do not want to end up being rushed at the last minute under pressure from movers and family members when everything you cherish gets carelessly thrown into boxes in order to move you out on moving day.
Buying and selling a home today takes more time than it did in the past for several reasons:
• Finding a new home may take time based upon San Diego’s current market conditions, for example less inventory and higher prices.
• You may have special needs now, so your requirements for the new home may make it more difficult to find the right home. For example looking for a home that will allow for wheelchair access or ramps instead of stairs…
• It becomes more difficult to coordinate the sales and closings when you and your family members are selling several homes at the same time to move in together.
• The paperwork in California that is required today for escrow, disclosures and loans is far more extensive than it was a few years ago.
• And moving into a retirement community alters the family dynamics, as well as what you may choose to move and what you no longer need when you downsize; for example kitchen items may no longer be needed in the new place.
2. Baby Boomers Need to Understand the Loan Process:
• If you are buying a new home recognize that acquiring a new loan for your home can be very trying and take much longer than it used to take in the past. Lenders now require more paperwork and conditions in order for you to acquire a home loan in California.
• If you need to sell your current home to qualify for the new loan, or your income has changed because you are now retired or earning less income than before, you will have to prove you have the ability to pay for the new loan, and it will probably take the lender longer to verify.
• Expect delays with loans and property closings because it is often part of the real estate transaction. A new condo may not be approved for the type of loan you are getting, you find a problem with the property, such as a cracked slab that needs to be repaired before getting the loan approved or the seller has a delay with their new home purchase and everything gets stalled. Expect these things so that you experience less surprises and frustration.
Avoiding and reducing extra stress as a Baby Boomer:
• Coordinating the closing of two homes at the same time is always tricky for agents and their team. You will want your agent to keep you in the loop regarding any changes so you are less anxious about what is going on.
• If you are the one who has to organize your family to pack up and prepare the home you may feel more pressure to get things done. If another family member does not do it the way you like, you may feel forgotten or frustrated about the way they are handling it.
• You may decide to sell your current home first, or sell it after you have found your new home. This can be scary if there is little inventory to choose from. You may need to rent back after you sell your home or move twice before you settle into your new place.
• You should select a lender now and get your preapproval going for the new loan so you can get the necessary paperwork going now, before you list your home for sale and get an offer.
• It takes time to get your loan pre-approved and once that happens you will want to start your home search online. You can go to SanDiegoSearchForHomes.com to find the current homes for sale.
• You can also save your searches on this website and receive emails whenever a new home comes on the market that fits your search criteria. You can see all of the home details and photos so you can drive by the home, check out the neighborhood and community to decide whether you want to see the inside.
• You will also want your lender to tell you the loan amount you qualify for and what your mortgage payments will be, so you know what price range of homes to look for.
• And, if you like to compare mortgage rates with other lenders, understand that the rate advertised in an ad does not always reflect the fees and the points you will be required to pay to actually close the loan. Ask your lender for the Annual Percentage Rate to compare their rates to other lender’s rates.
Select an Experienced Lender in Advance:
• You will want to select a lender you trust and feel very comfortable with to ask them for help and to make the best decisions about your loan options.
• If there are some problems with your credit or getting qualified for a loan, you will want those issues to be resolved long before you list your home for sale or look for a new home to buy. You do not want to fall in love with a home that you cannot afford to buy.
• If you would like a referral to one of my trusted mortgage lenders in San Diego, be sure to contact me so I can refer you to a lender I absolutely trust, and who would love to help you with your home loan.
3. Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent:
• Hire an experienced real estate agent who understands the needs of baby boomers and who can help you through the stressful waters of the sale. If you are buying a new home and selling another home, you will want a skilled agent who knows how to manage these sales at the same time.
• Hire an agent who will remain calm and help you make the right decisions to keep you from feeling or acting crazy.
• Hire an agent who can give you expert advice during your home preparation phase and throughout the closing process, and one who has a keen ability to negotiate to get the best terms for you.
• You need a great agent when there is a lot of things happening during the sale with an added purchase of another home. The agent should be able to coordinate all of the inspections, the paperwork, stay on top of the loan requirements and one who has experience of working with baby boomers.
• You want an agent who will remains calm even when you may be upset; one who will keep you sane and guide you through the four stressful phases of selling your home.
• To learn more about these four stressful stages. watch this video series to learn tips to manage each phase of your sale, and to help family members remain calm as they assist you with any portion of your decision making, packing up, selling and moving.
• Go to The4StressfulPhasesof SellingyourHome.com
• Do not compromise when it comes to selecting the right agent for the job. Not all real estate professionals provide the highest level of service even though they say they do. A skilled professional operates with high integrity and is efficient when it comes to meeting deadlines and manages all of the steps to closed the home on time. They must be able to follow through with their promises. A slight hiccup in the transaction can cause a baby boomer more anxiety if there is no accountability by the agent.
• You want your phone calls returned quickly, and you want a professional who does not treat you like you are just a business transaction. You deserve to be treated with respect and care.
• This is a very important time in your life so only work with a real estate agent who understands all of the steps required to get you through the sale and purchase of your new home with the least amount of chaos and drama.
I am an Experienced Real Estate Agent with Baby Boomers
I am an experienced real estate agent who can help you both with the stress reduction and the real estate sale. I am very familiar with every stage of the home sale process. I am one of the baby boomers myself, I am very comfortable helping families get through the preparation and home sale phases even when things are falling apart. I love educating, guiding and supporting Boomers as well as their family members to make sure the sale go as smoothly as possible. I have worked with many families going through a lifestyle transition, such as a divorce, the death of a loved one, relocation, downsizing and resizing due to illness, aging, and the loss of income, which creates the need to sell a home.
If you or a family member need assistance with the sale of your home in San Diego, feel free to contact me to answer your questions. Let me help you make the right decisions, and give you the solutions every step of the way throughout the sale and that purchase of a new home. I can be reached by email, at [email protected], or you can call or text at 858-229-8072.
CA-BRE-00703471. Realty One Group-Rancho Bernardo.
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©Deena L. Stacer, PhD . All Rights Reserved, May 2017.