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It’s not just cash-strapped millennials worried about housing affordability

A new survey of Americans 55 years and over shows that almost half worry about where they will live in retirement and almost two-thirds of baby boomer parents fret about their adult children’s ability to afford desirable housing
A new survey of Americans 55 years and over shows that almost half worry about where they will live in retirement and almost two-thirds of baby boomer parents fret about their adult children’s ability to afford desirable housing File

Turns out it’s not just the cash-strapped millennial generation that worries about housing. A new survey reports that the 55-and-over set may be losing sleep about where they will live in retirement.

The survey of 1,000 Americans by the NHP Foundation, a not-for-profit provider of affordable housing, revealed:

▪  30 percent of baby boomers experience anxiety about being able to afford where they live at least once a month.

▪  42 percent of retirees reported such anxiety at least once daily.

▪  46 percent said they worry about “the ability to afford desirable retirement living,” when asked what causes the greatest anxiety.

▪  65 percent of boomers worry at least once a month about their adult children's ability to afford desirable housing, with more than 10 percent worrying about this at least once a day.

▪  64 percent of boomers are specifically concerned about their adult children's ability to afford rent or mortgage.

▪  43 percent are most concerned about the next generation's retirement savings.

“The anxiety is now multi-generational,” NHP Foundation CEO Richard Burns said in a statement. “So we are working today to increase our stock of affordable housing to ensure that this and future generations are able to afford desirable places to live.”

The NHP Foundation baby boomer survey is the third in a series. The first reported on the general population and housing affordability, determining that 75 percent of the population worried at any given time about losing their housing. The second queried millennials, finding that 76 percent of that group have made compromises in order to find affordable housing.

“These findings underscore the urgency to make housing affordability solutions a priority in America especially for those most vulnerable,” said Ali Solis, President and CEO of MakeRoom, a national renter’s advocacy group.

Anxiety over housing varies according to region. Though almost 25 percent of boomers worry about affording rent/mortgage payments, fewer were concerned about this in the West and in the Midwest, under 20 percent. In comparison, 38 percent of those in the south rank this their biggest worry.

Like in other areas of society, the national mood on housing was affected by the November election, with half of respondents reporting substantial or great anxiety over possible changes from Washington.

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