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Aging population means advance planning for homebuyers

by Steve Randall on 05 Mar 2020

Canada’s population is aging and the country is set to have a significant increase in seniors in the coming years but is the housing market ready?

A new report from Sotheby’s International Realty Canada and the Mustel Group, reveals that aging homeowners are concerned about their living arrangements in their senior years.

With an estimated 1 in 5 Canadians of 65 years and older by 2024, the challenges for the real estate industry is being able to meet the demands of a cohort of seniors that wants to age in their own homes.

In one of the first studies into the housing aspirations of aging Canadians, the survey of 1,764 homeowners of ages 54 years or older in Metro Vancouver, Greater Calgary, Greater Toronto and Greater Montreal, found that 46% considered their needs in older years when they bought their current home.

Factors that are important to these buyers include safety, transit links, and grocery stores.

Within the home, a main level bathroom, and either single-level living or potential for a bedroom on the main level are important. For condos, elevators, fitness and wellbeing facilities, and security were top considerations.

No desire to move
The survey confirms the trend for aging Canadians to want to remain in their own home – and their current home – as long as possible.

Little more than a third of respondents said they expect to sell their home in their lifetime and just 14% expect to move to a new city, with a similar share expecting to move to a different neighbourhood in their current city.

Of those that do expect to sell, downsizing (54%) and freeing cash for lifestyle expenses (25%) are among the top reasons.

Condos are the top choice of those who plan to sell. This is particularly apparent in Montreal, Vancouver, and Toronto.

The full report is on the Insight Blog at sothebysrealty.ca.



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