As a property owner, you probably focus your advertising efforts on securing stable residents like families (or college students if your property is near a college campus). However, you may not realize Baby Boomers (people aged 55 and older) want to rent their homes.
Yes, it sounds counterintuitive. However, a survey conducted by Freddie Mac found that over five million Baby Boomers expected to move and lease their home by 2020. Specifically, 79 percent of homeowners and 83 percent of lessors expected to move within the next five to 10 years.
A shift this large will stress an already overstretched housing market, creating opportunities for property owners hoping to profit from this emerging market. For property owners, the possibilities presented by this survey are enormous. First, this is a large, emerging market likely to spread the opportunities around. Second, it gives you access to a large pool of responsible, reliable income sources.
The long-term lease is the “white whale” for which property owners hunt. These Baby Boomers are a huge opportunity if you can structure your resources, advertising, and services to address their needs.
Top Attractions for Baby Boomers
Baby Boomers rated several factors as “very important” in determining the outcome of their decisions.
First, they want affordable properties. Second, they want properties with amenities meeting their needs in retirement. They do not want to be responsible for property maintenance and upkeep. Finally, they want to live in a walkable community.
As you can see, several of these factors are well within your control. Here are a few tips to position your property to dive into this market.
Balancing Affordability and Amenities
Baby Boomers want both affordable homes and residences replete with amenities and community benefits. The more amenities offered, the more expensive the property, of course. So ensure the amenities you offer do not result in significantly higher costs.
A San Diego property management company can help you devise a marketing and operations plan to tap into this potential pool of lessors without drastically increasing your costs. A property management company can also advise you of the long-term benefit of these lessors. For example, keeping the property occupied for long, uninterrupted stretches naturally creates a stable source of income. The longer you keep a property full, the less money you spend on advertising, cleaning, securing new lessors, and paying upkeep without offsetting income.
The benefit that comes from absorbing higher costs is stability.
Modifications and Accommodations
The Federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) broadly prohibits discrimination in providing housing based on race, age, religion, sex, disability, and a few other classifications. Why mention the FHA? Because many Baby Boomers are mobility impaired. They may not drive around with a blue disability placard, but they certainly require additional help and could qualify as a protected person under the FHA.
A truly professional San Diego property management company will caution you, when you market to Baby Boomers, to understand your obligations under the FHA. For example, the FHA requires property owners to make reasonable accommodations and modifications.
A modification is a structural change to the property. For example, knocking down a wall or installing a hand rail is a modification. Accommodation is a change or exception to a certain policy, practice, rule, or service.
The growth in the Baby Boomer market presents tremendous opportunities for property owners. A San Diego property management company like Property Advantage can help you tap into this emerging market and secure a steady source of income for years to come.