Our Blog


Decoding the Myth: Will a Silver Tsunami Impact the 2024 Housing Market?

Decoding the Myth: Will a Silver Tsunami Impact the 2024 Housing Market?

The term "Silver Tsunami" has been circulating online, causing speculation about its potential impact on the 2024 housing market. This colloquialism refers to aging Americans adjusting their housing arrangements as baby boomers grow older. The concept suggests a significant wave of downsizing, leading to an influx of larger homes on the market. However, experts argue that the Silver Tsunami may not be as imminent as some predict.

Understanding the Silver Tsunami:

HousingWire defines the Silver Tsunami as a phenomenon where aging Americans change their housing arrangements to accommodate their needs. The idea revolves around the baby boomer generation downsizing their homes, potentially causing a surge in the number of larger homes for sale. While the concept seems plausible in theory, experts believe it won't have a substantial impact on the housing market in 2024.

Why 2024 May Remain Unaffected:

Contrary to the Silver Tsunami theory, experts assert that this transformative potential has not materialized in any significant way and is unlikely to do so in the near future. Data from the AARP reveals that over half of surveyed adults aged 65 and above plan to age in place rather than move. This reluctance to relocate is a key factor in why the expected wave of housing market changes has yet to occur.Data from the AARP shows over half of the surveyed adults ages 65 and up plan to stay put and age in place in their current home rather than move (see chart below):

Experts Weigh In:

According to Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American, demographic trends do not manifest as tsunamis but rather as gradual shifts. The baby boomer generation spans almost two decades of births, indicating that any impact on the housing market will unfold slowly over time. Fleming emphasizes that these demographic trends are more likely to trickle than create a sudden surge.

The Gradual Nature of Demographic Trends:

In debunking the Silver Tsunami myth, it becomes evident that not every baby boomer is planning to sell or move. Those who do decide to relocate are likely to do so gradually over an extended period. Mark Fleming's insight into demographic trends highlights that the impact of any housing market adjustments resulting from baby boomers will be a slow, steady process rather than an abrupt event.


If concerns about a Silver Tsunami disrupting the 2024 housing market have crossed your mind, rest assured that the evidence suggests otherwise. The reluctance of many baby boomers to move, coupled with the gradual nature of demographic trends, indicates that any impact on the housing market will be a slow and manageable evolution. As Mark Fleming aptly puts it, "Demographic trends, they don't tsunami. They trickle."