Boomers and Elders Housing Report: More Americans Age 50+ Find Housing Unaffordable

WASHINGTON, D.C.–(ENEWSPF)–October 4, 2011.  AARP’s Public Policy Institute has released a new report that provides a nationwide snapshot of the changing housing landscape for boomers and elders. “The AARP State Housing Profiles” and its brief summary “Housing for Older Adults: The Impacts of the Recession” updates and expands on a 2007 report on housing for Americans 50+ with detailed findings parsed out state-by-state. Conditions have changed greatly for older households during the last decade. Housing has become less affordable for many older adults who currently devote an unsustainable amount of their budget to paying rent or for their home.

“The American dream is getting harder for many older Americans to sustain,” said Susan Reinhard, Senior Vice President for Public Policy at AARP. “While just a decade ago Americans were more likely to own their homes and cover their rent, today many are faced with the harsh reality that they cannot afford to live their lives the way they choose.”

Key findings in the report include:

  • More older Americans are facing an increasing “housing cost-burden,” with more than 30% of their income devoted to housing costs  
  • Fewer Americans 50+ own their homes free and clear and more are still paying mortgages  
  • 50+ households are less likely to be married and living with a spouse than in the past  
  • More men 50+ are living alone, while fewer women 50+ are living alone   
  • People age 50+ are more likely to live in older homes than in the past

“The AARP State Housing Profiles” draws on several sources including the Census Bureau’s 2009 American Community survey.

The nationwide snapshot report is available online here: The full edition of the report includes state-by-state housing profiles, which is available online here: