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Boomers heading back to real estate market, but downsizing is tough in B.C.: report

Last Updated Aug 8, 2018 at 5:55 am PST

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VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – When it comes to moving the real estate market, don’t count aging baby boomers out yet. A report finds almost 1.5 million of them plan to buy a home — most likely a condo — in the next five years.

According to the latest “Boomer Trends Survey” from Royal LePage, 17 per cent of Canadian boomers think they’ll be wading back into the real estate market soon, selling longtime homes and downsizing.

But managing broker Michael Trites points out the aging demographic is still dealing with full nests, particularly here on the West Coast, where 24 per cent of respondents with children living at home don’t expect them to leave until after the age of 35.

“It’s highest here… it comes back to affordability. You can’t buy the $200,000 or $300,000 property anymore. For the most part, those are twice that amount.”

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Trites adds many people born between 1946 and 1964 want to stay near their kids. “If your family is all in one location, I don’t know if many boomers will move away from family — unless there’s something in the family dynamic that’s not agreeable — but if the family moves, they may follow.”

The survey suggests smaller cities and recreational areas will attract more boomer investment than major cities, which are considered more unaffordable for retirement.

It also finds another factor is many boomers in this province are banking on real estate to fund their retirement.

 – With files from Simon Druker