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These are the upcoming real estate trends for 2018

There is a higher demand for properties in less populated areas while Gen Z is upstaging millennials as property buyers.



Depending on where you live, 2017 has been a great year or a bust in real estate. Still, consider 2018 a blank slate for sour moments and/or a platform to improve incredible moments. The upcoming trends are not concrete but a glimpse of what may happen in 2018. Like previous years, 2018 is unpredictable.

Make way for these demographics

Generation Z, the people born in 1995 or later, is about to upstage millennials as the superior group. They are already gaining steam with brands and industries and they are barely out of college. Tech-savvy from birth, Generation Z will enter the real estate market with student loans and debt, yet will aim for structure, stability, and an urban lifestyle. 

Ignoring Baby Boomers, the seniors born 1946-1964, for younger buyers will cost you in 2018. The demographic is ready to retire now, albeit later than normal. They require a home to live in during the retirement years. Most retirees will downsize for simple living with plenty of amenities to keep them active, alert, and busy. These people couldn’t retire earlier due to poor financial planning and the Great Recession fallout. 

The calm before the storm

Thanks to Generation X, Generation Y (millennials), and Baby Boomers, a housing shortage is coming. Top markets will have trouble accommodating buyers and investors in the aforementioned demographics. Home construction will continue to rise, but it may not keep up with upcoming demand. Rising costs of building materials and labor shortages will force contractors’ hand. 

Will building companies pay more for materials and workers? Will companies get frugal? Natural disasters like the California Wildfires, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, and Hurricane Maria displaced many Americans, making it more complicated to answer these questions.

The populated cities are taking a backseat

If you compare the 10 most populated cities to Urban Land Magazine’s U.S. Markets to Watch in 2018, three populated cities reached the top 10. A fourth made the top 20. It demonstrates buyers and investors leaning toward less populated cities. The populated cities cannot afford to lower real estate costs to compete because the current population’s housing demands forces home prices upward. Therefore, the populated cities are taking a backseat.

real estate trends

Buyers prefer less populated cities instead of getting real estate properties in more populated cities. (Source)

Secondary anchors Fort Lauderdale, Raleigh, and Charleston are in the top 15, yet lacks primary anchors’ population like Los Angeles, Boston, and Chicago. Buyers will sacrifice big city living for a financially stable life, and in some cases, receive the best of both worlds. The secondary cities have substantial local amenities and affordable cost of living without the expensive price tag.

Rental housing grows at a slower pace

The rental market, meanwhile, shows no signs of slowing down. Relocation moves including (but not limited to) college, employment, divorce, newlywed/family and/or new scenery are feeding the demand for rental homes and apartments. Similar to the housing shortage, a wave of buyers and investors are coming, and rental investments depend on whether the demographics can afford to pay the rising cost. 

Rental housing’s ‘temporary’ stigma is a major contribution to the slow pace. In one lease, rental accommodations provide shelter for six months to two years at a time, giving tenants the opportunity to decide their next move. However, rental housing will feel more stable if the tenant continues to renew the lease, pay the rent, and obey the modified lease agreement.

The crystal ball-like predictions stem from the year’s emerging trends possibility spilling over into 2018. Real estate agents must stay ahead of the trends by reading about it and preparing for it. In the meantime, concentrate on day-to-day operations, attract new clientele to your list, and keep current clientele happy.


DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.

Tonya Jones Reynolds is a freelance writer specializing in real estate, marketing, and money articles for Born2Invest. Some past and present companies she writes for include Blogmutt, YouQueen, Blasting News, Reflect & Refresh, Inman News,, and Textbroker. With 7+ years of experience as a freelance writer, she joined Born2Invest as a contributor to help readers make good decisions about their financial and professional lives.