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Do People Really Move Because of Bad Neighbors?

Do People Really Move Because of Bad Neighbors?

Have you ever been so annoyed by a neighbor that you’ve thought about moving to get away from them?

While “neighbors from hell” do indeed cause some homeowners and renters to leave their current living arrangement, most people decide they can live with their neighbor’s quirks: A recent survey by marketing agency Fractl found that just 5% of people who moved in the last year did so because of bad relations with their neighbor.

The most common reasons for moving

According to the survey, which polled more than 1,000 U.S. adults, a new job or job transfer was the No. 1 reason for relocation, cited by nearly a quarter of respondents. 

Most of the other top reasons for moving were house and neighborhood-related or family-related:

  • Better home (23.9%)
  • Larger home (17.5%)
  • Family reasons (16.5%)
  • Closer to work (16.3%)
  • Better neighborhood (15.4%)
  • Cheaper home (12.4%)
  • Change in relationship status (11.4%)
  • Following a spouse (10.5%)
  • Safe, family-oriented environment (10.0%)

Some less common motivations respondents cited include moving closer to elderly parents or children, desire to live in a better school district and retirement.

How to manage stress during your move

Anyone who’s ever moved knows how stressful it can be to pack up and transport everything you own to a new location. The Fractl study found that moving negatively impacted the average respondent’s sleep for 15 nights after they arrived at their new place, and 50% cited stress as the main reason for poor sleep. 

The distance you move can also impact your sleep quality, according to the survey. Most respondents (65%) relocated within 50 miles of their previous residence, and those who moved within the same city were 52% less likely to experience worse sleep quality. This is likely because of the shift to unfamiliar surroundings when you relocate to a new city or state — 42.4% of respondents said this factor affected their sleep after a move.

No matter how far away you’re moving, Fractl recommended the following tips to combat post-move stress:

  • Unpack and set up your bedroom as soon as possible.
  • Maintain a consistent sleep schedule.
  • Limit your caffeine intake late in the day.
  • Adjust the room temperature.
  • Take a warm shower or bath right before bed.

Want to check out property values in a neighborhood before you move? Plug any address into NeighborWho to find out owner details, current value and more.

Millennials Want Houses, and Boomers Are Eager to Sell—So What’s The Holdup?

Millennials Want Houses, and Boomers Are Eager to Sell—So What’s The Holdup?

The millennial generation – generally defined as individuals born between the early 1980s and mid-1990s – has been accused of “ruining” a lot of things. Depending on who you ask, you might have heard that this cohort is killing marriage, department stores, dinner dates, sitcoms, paper napkins, and yes – the housing market.

Right now, there is an abundance of inventory in the current real estate market that simply isn’t selling. A Wall Street Journal article explains that baby boomers and retirees spent millions of dollars in the early 2000s building large, elaborate homes, so they could “live out their golden years in houses with all the bells and whistles.”

As these homeowners age, their spacious, multi-level dwellings are getting harder to maintain and live in. Unfortunately, they can’t downsize until they sell – and that’s getting harder and harder to do, with few young buyers interested in their properties.

Why aren’t millennials buying real estate?

It’s true that millennials aren’t purchasing real estate the way their parents and grandparents did. According to data from The Urban Institute, around 45% of baby boomers and Gen Xers were homeowners at age 25 to 34. That percentage is just 37% among millennials, many of whom currently fall into this age bracket.

So what changed for this generation? Why aren’t millennials buying homes? Are they too financially burdened by student debt to afford real estate? Are they just not interested in home ownership? Are they wasting all their money on avocado toast?

As with many major market shifts, the answer to this question is complex and multi-faceted. It’s hard to pinpoint a single determining factor that has dissuaded millennials from purchasing homes. However, there are a few contributing circumstances that make this trend unlikely to reverse any time soon:

Job availability and affordable housing rarely exist in the same market. The Atlantic reports that in desirable, affordable cities, there aren’t many good jobs available to fund a home purchase. Conversely, in major metropolitan areas where jobs are plentiful, housing units aren’t being built fast enough to keep up with the employment demand. The homes that are available in these areas are often unaffordable, based on early and mid-career millennials’ salaries.

There’s a growing gap between median income and home value. A survey by real estate firm Unison found that, on average, it takes 14 years for Americans to save up for a 20% home down payment, if they’re saving 5% of their city’s gross median income each year. That figure was just nine years in 1975. The gap is even more pronounced in metro markets like Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York and Miami, where it would take more than 35 years to save up a 20% down payment.

Home buying conditions are less favorable now than they were decades ago. For younger would-be buyers who are looking to purchase modest, affordable homes, credit is harder to come by now than it was. Lenders are less inclined to issue smaller mortgage loans (below $70,000) because they don’t see as big of a profit, reports another Wall Street Journal article. Combine this with high student debt, rising property taxes, and restrictive zoning policies, and many millennials simply don’t see home ownership as a feasible option.

Beyond the economic aspects, millennials have another reason not to buy homes: They’ve embraced what Forbes describes as a “rentership society,” where they “can have it all but own none of it.”

This is not unique to real estate; with everything from vehicles to entertainment and even clothing, millennials are increasingly opting to pay for on-demand access and the freedom to change their minds, rather than commit to owning and maintaining something that will depreciate in value. To this generation, renting indefinitely often seems more convenient and financially practical than investing in a home they may want to move out of in a few years.

What will happen to the baby boomers’ big, unsellable homes?

If a modern millennial does take the plunge into home ownership, they’re unlikely to go for the sprawling, multi-million dollar estates today’s baby boomers are trying to sell. Candace Taylor of The Wall Street Journal writes that buyers of all ages now “eschew … large, ornate houses” in secluded areas, in favor of smaller properties in walking distance of lifestyle essentials like restaurants, retail and nightlife.

Taylor notes that many of the baby boomers’ big, expensive homes built before 2012 are selling for far less than the owners paid to build them, sometimes at a nearly 50% discount. These homes often sit on the market for a year or more, trapping the owners in properties they don’t want, and settling for selling prices at which they can’t make a profit.

If baby boomers hope to sell their homes, catering to millennials’ taste for all things modern, minimalist and low-maintenance can be a good start. Real estate experts recommend upgrading what you can to ensure a new buyer will not be scared away by expensive renovations. The Spruce advises focusing on kitchen and bathroom remodels – particularly countertops, cabinets, fixtures and hardware – if you want the best chance of recouping your investment.

Want to know what properties in your neighborhood are worth? Plug any address into NeighborWho to find out owner details, current value and more.

Corporal Kennedy St., Bayside, New York: The perfect balance of cozy Queens neighborhood and New York City nightlife.

Corporal Kennedy St., Bayside, New York: The perfect balance of cozy Queens neighborhood and New York City nightlife.

With our sights set on areas like Long Island City and Ridgewood, we had a general idea for the type of neighborhood that we were looking for; the type of street we were looking for. Most important to us, we were looking for a pet friendly home that was also near mass transit and the highway so I could get to Midtown and my other half could get to Long Island for work.

Corporal Kennedy St. in Bayside, New York, beat out everything else that we looked at. On the eastern side of Flushing, Bayside remains one of the safest neighborhoods in Queens. The apartments were bigger, the streets were cleaner, and there were plenty of necessities steps away from where we settled in.

Corporal Kennedy is a small stretch from just before 26th Avenue through to Northern Boulevard. On the 26th Avenue end sits Bay Terrace Shopping Mall where you will find a newly renovated and Peapod delivery service equipped Stop N’ Shop grocery store, an AMC Loews movie theater with seats you can reserve ahead of time, restaurants like the freshly added Allora Italian Kitchen & Bar, and just about every style of clothing under the sun (Aldo, American Eagle, Gap, Express, New York & Company, you name it.) Best of all, there’s a brand new Home Goods that makes it much easier to cozy up your home to fit the vibe of the area.

Moving south on Corporal Kennedy, you’ll find an architectural masterpiece, Bayside High School. Bringing a youthful life to the area, teens from all over the borough can be found school also offers a variety of community activities. One added benefit of such a large public high school is that there are plenty of buses that make their way up Corporal Kennedy to accommodate the students and faculty.

The majority of Corporal Kennedy is a divided two-lane road featuring some of the most beautiful houses in Bayside. The area leans toward middle to middle-upper class with a diverse demographic of languages and cultures represented. This diversity is brought to life just steps away on Bell Boulevard. Bell Boulevard was featured in The New York Times as a nightlife hotspot. Restaurants and bars make up the majority of the main thoroughfare and just about all of Bayside takes advantage of the amazing food and drinks (not to mention there is a pizzeria on just about every block.) Living on Corporal Kennedy, you get the benefits of the nightlife without the bustle of living on the boulevard. On top of the great drinks and music, you can find  a taste of just about every cuisine from Italian to Indian and everything in between.

Corporal Kennedy St. is also all about proximity and convenience. The Bayside Train Station (an express stop on the Long Island Rail Road) will get you to and from New York City in less than 30 minutes. Easy access to the Clearview Expressway (the direct line up to the Throgs Neck Bridge the Bronx and beyond, the Cross Island Parkway, the Long Island Expressway, and the Northern State are all reachable just minutes from your home. You can get just about anywhere, in any which way, from Corporal Kennedy St.