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NAR Reports

2016 home seller demographics – who’s selling these days?

(REAL ESTATE NEWS) Does a home seller in the South or the Northeast sell faster? Are sellers younger or older in 2016? Find out in this year’s report.

couple home seller


This summer, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) surveyed 5,465 home buyers and sellers for the 2016 National Association of Realtors® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. The study shows that in the past five years, affordability has tightened, and the time spent home shopping has fallen.

While some things haven’t changed (the average distance sellers move), there has been a dramatic shift in time on market. Let’s dig a bit deeper.

Who is selling in 2016?

The median seller’s age this year is 54 (up from 53 just five years ago). Here’s how the ages of home sellers break down:

  • 12 percent of sellers are aged 18 to 34 years
  • 22 percent of sellers are 35 to 44 years
  • 18 percent of sellers are 45 to 54 years
  • 22 percent of sellers are 55 to 64 years
  • 20 percent of sellers are 65 to 74 years
  • 7 percent of sellers are 75+ years of age

Their median income was $100,700 in 2015, down slightly from $101,500 in 2011. In the past five years, the average distance moved remains 20 miles.

The report indicates that 76 percent of sellers were married couples, down slightly (1.0 percent) from last year. From 2004 to 2010, this percentage hovered between 71 and 75 percent.

Fully 14 percent of sellers were single women. Of all home sold, 63 percent did not have children residing in the home.

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Homes are selling faster

The average time on market fell drastically from nine weeks in 2011 to four weeks in 2016. Regional performance varied, with homes in the Northeast selling in six weeks, homes in the Midwest and South selling in a month, and homes in the West selling in only three weeks.

The takeaway

If you’re marketing listings, knowing the national trends can help manicure your own efforts. While trends locally are still the most relevant to any broker or agent’s career, knowing the national trends can help pinpoint adjustments that should be made locally, or affirm decisions already being made.

The practice of real estate is changing given these rapidly altered circumstances surrounding home buyers and sellers, and it is important to be informed!

Click here for hundreds of other stats from this report.


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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.


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