When older buyers are ready to move, they are ready to move. These are buyers and sellers who generally move to make a lifestyle change, to downsize, or for medical reasons or death of a spouse. Many have already been longtime homeowners, but it may have been many years since they were involved in a transaction. It is up to you to guide them through the search and sale with extra attention to what may have changed about the transaction process from years past. More servicers are available than ever  to help seniors make the transition to a new home, including help with decluttering and repairs as well as packing and unpacking services.  


NAR Library & Archives has already done the research for you. References (formerly Field Guides) offer links to articles, eBooks, websites, statistics, and more to provide a comprehensive overview of perspectives. EBSCO articles (E) are available only to NAR members and require the member's nar.realtor login.

What do seniors value?

2019 Home Ownership: Rates by Age 

  • 65+:     78%
  • 55-64:  74.8%
  • 45-54:  70.1%
  • 35-44:  59.4%
  • < 35:    36.4%

Source: Homeownership Rates By Age (U.S. Census Bureau, Oct. 29, 2019)

Housing Trends of the Over-50 Demographic

New Models for Active Adult Living (Urban Land, Oct. 14, 2019)

Seniors Housing Sector Sees Record Demand (JLL, Oct. 6, 2019)

Housing America’s Older Adults 2019 (Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, 2019)

Working with Seniors

‘We Need Each Other’: Seniors are Drawn to New Housing Arrangements (The New York Times, Oct. 1, 2019)

Retirees: The Most Highly Profitable, Yet Grossly Underserved Niche in Real Estate (Bigger Pockets, Sep. 7, 2019)

When Should Retirees Downsize Their Homes? (Investopedia, Nov. 22, 2019)

Baby Boomer Real Estate Leads: 3 Strategies You Absolutely Have to Know (and Some Tips) (Easy Agent Pro, Nov. 6, 2019)

Cohousing Builds Active Communities (REALTOR® Magazine, Jul. 2, 2019)

Older Homeowners Turn to Equity for Retirement (REALTOR® Magazine, Jun. 27, 2019)

Seniors are to Blame for Housing Shortage, Study Finds (realtor.com®, Feb. 6, 2019)

5 Ways to Improve Real Estate Marketing to Seniors (Homes & Land)

Reverse Mortgage Basics

What to Know Before Getting a Reverse Mortgage (Forbes, Nov. 25, 2019)

5 Ways Reverse Mortgages Pay You Money (Think Advisor, Nov. 20, 2019)

What to Know About Reverse Mortgages (AARP, Oct. 29, 2019)

Unlocking Housing Wealth for Older Americans: Strategies to Improve Reverse Mortgages (Brookings Institution, Oct. 28, 2019)

Everything You Need to Know About Reverse Mortgages (Bankrate, May 3, 2019)

Useful Websites

NASMM: The National Association of Senior Move Managers is a membership organization for Senior Move Managers, recognized for its innovative programs and expertise related to senior move management, transition and relocation issues affecting older adults.

SRES: Seniors Real Estate Specialists® designees are REALTORS® qualified to address the needs of home buyers and sellers age 50+.

Mortgage Calculator: A guide to help you understand how reverse mortgages work.

AARP: A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that helps people 50 and older improve the quality of their lives.

Immersion Active: Integrates data-driven digital marketing strategy with sales techniques.

The Cohousing Association of the United States: A national non-profit raising awareness of the benefits of cohousing and supporting the development of cohousing communities nationwide.

U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development: Information for senior citizens.

SeniorResource: The “E-cyclopedia” of senior options and information.

Leading Age (AAHSA): An association of 6,000 not-for-profit organizations dedicated to making America a better place to grow old.

Next Avenue: Next Avenue is public media’s first and only national journalism service for America’s booming older population. Our daily content delivers vital ideas, context and perspectives on issues that matter most as we age.

eBooks & Other Resources


The following eBooks and digital audiobooks are available to NAR members:

Boomer Basics (Kindle, eBook)

Boomer Marketing (eBook)

Future Marketing: Targeting Seniors, Boomers, and Generations X and Y (Kindle, eBook)

Gilbert Guide to Senior Housing (eBook)

Reverse Mortgages for Dummies® (eBook)

The Complete Guide to Reverse Mortgages (Kindle, eBook)

The Mortgage Answer Book (eBook)

How to Age in Place (Kindle, eBook)

Books, Videos, Research Reports & More

The resources below are available for loan through Member Support. Up to three books, tapes, CDs and/or DVDs can be borrowed for 30 days from the Library for a nominal fee of $10. Call Member Support at 800-874-6500 for assistance.

Boomer Consumer: Ten New Rules for Marketing to America's Largest, Wealthiest and Most Influential Group (Great Falls, VA: linx, 2007) HD 7293 T39

Reverse Mortgages for Dummies (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2005) HG 2051 L99r

The New Reverse Mortgage Formula: How to Convert Home Equity into Tax-Free Income (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2005) HG 2051 K29

Pocket Idiot’s Guide to Reverse Mortgages (Indianapolis, IN: Alpha, 2005) HG 2040.5 P76

Have an idea for a real estate topic? Send us your suggestions.

The inclusion of links on this page does not imply endorsement by the National Association of REALTORS®. NAR makes no representations about whether the content of any external sites which may be linked in this page complies with state or federal laws or regulations or with applicable NAR policies. These links are provided for your convenience only and you rely on them at your own risk.


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