American Homeowners Don’t Want to Move, Plan for Home Repairs Instead

As recent home value appreciation reports have pointed out, homeowners in America are not selling, and a recent analysis from Zillow said that many — 63% — are not looking to move at all.

The Zillow Group’s Consumer Housing Trends Report 2018 surveyed 13,439 current renters, buyers, sellers, and homeowners about their housing attitudes during this time of low housing inventory and increasing home value appreciation. While the ages within the groups were varied, seniors were well represented in the homeowners’ group, which had a median age of 55 and a median household income of $72,500.

And the data shows that these homeowners intend to stay in place, with only 5% planning to sell within a year and 63% with no plans to go.


“They’re typically sticking with their homes for 16 years, though some stay much longer, contributing to the low home inventory,” the online real estate company noted in its report.

Along with a desire to age in place, the report’s older respondents had many other characteristics of a typical reverse mortgage borrower, such as having equity in their home and interest in making home upgrades.

About 59% of homeowners still have a mortgage balance — equal to about 62% of the home’s value — but home equity remains the biggest asset for the typical U.S. homeowner, with 52% of respondents’ wealth tied up in their properties.

Not only do homeowners want to stay in their homes, but more than half want to repair or rehab their abodes. Two-thirds of respondents plan to make at lease one update in the next year, and 63% said they just fix their homes problems when they arise.

The report also gave insights into seniors who were intending to sell or move, showing that older sellers made fewer concessions to buyers when it came time to negotiate a sale. They also had more flexibility when looking for a home to purchase.

“Older buyers, typically the least burdened by considerations about children and commutes, are casting a wider net than younger buyers for their next home, and even considering long-distance moves across state lines,” the report read.

As for regional findings, homeowners in the West were much more likely than any other region to sell their home for more than the asking price, or for list price.

Written by Maggie Callahan

Join the Conversation (1)

see all

This is a professional community. Please use discretion when posting a comment.

  • It is obvious that a homeowner with a lien of 62% of value on their property will not be able to pay that lien off with a HECM. It is also obvious they will not have anything left over for home improvements or upgrades.

    However, there are many seniors out there in the market place with little or no debt! These are the senior homeowners we need to target.

    Home improvements, additions and upgrading, all this can be done with a HECM or propitiatory product. The best thing about it is that the the senior homeowner can age in place, upgrade and improve their dream home and never have a mortgage payment to make for the rest of their lives!

    Not to bad for those seniors who can fulfill many of their dreams without the expended cash flow to have to pay for it!

    We just need to dig, search and seek out those seniors that fit into the category I just outlined. The data is out there for the taking.

    Don’t forget, we have over 8,000 seniors turning age 62 every day, many own homes, many have little or no debt on their homes.

    We can always find the way to make things work if we want it bad enough!

    John A. Smaldone

string(112) ""

Share your opinion