When a senior or senior couple starts to consider right sizing their lifestyle by downsizing the family home, their main concern are buyers. In the past few years, the job market hasn’t been stable enough or accessible enough in the San Francisco area to leverage a sellers’ market.

  • People are willing to commute to work if their neighborhoods provide a variety of healthy-living options, tech-savvy school districts, elite shopping and well-manicured parks
  • The city’s employment boom truly is helping Baby Boomers sell their home past the “what it’s really worth” mark
  • Walnut Creek is one of the area's communities reaping the benefits to the growth of the tech sector

When a senior or senior couple starts to consider right-sizing their lifestyle by downsizing the family home, their main concern are buyers. In the past few years, the job market hasn’t been stable enough or accessible enough in the San Francisco area to leverage a sellers’ market.

Home and condo prices in the San Francisco area are very competitive and often out of the affordability range for first-time buyers, leaving seniors looking to rightsize with limited options. The good news is that the market is changing and sellers in surrounding cities are receiving multiple offers!

The outside cities, such as Walnut Creek, are usually more within the price point for millennial homebuyers who are willing to commute to their jobs in San Francisco and who can also enjoy the school districts and lifestyles offered by adjoining cities.

Walnut Creek to San Francisco is a 45-minute commute. With a number of technology based jobs in the San Francisco area allowing more of its workforce to work from home, have mobile days or offering incentives to move into the surrounding areas, the city’s employment boom truly is helping Baby Boomers sell their home past the “what it’s really worth” mark.

Less than a year ago the Los Angeles Times ran an article predicting that San Francisco’s job market would drive up salaries and improve the seller’s market within the real estate industry. Of the 80,000 jobs added to the San Francisco Bay area in the last two years, half are filled by people who live within 10 miles of where they work. Everyone else lives 11-plus miles away with an average commute of 45 to 75 minutes (without traffic).

As new technology companies continue to be a preferred investment for celebrities like Oscar winner Jared Leto and Grammy winner Jay Z, the expansion of a tech-based workforce continues to thrive, grow and bring in major investors who are able to supply better real estate opportunities.

Since the end of this year’s summer, eight of my last 10 listings went over the asking price. Two were slightly below the asking price as a result of the real estate market adjusting the listing price. More and more of my senior downsizing clientele are seeing a benefit to the value of their homes vs. the growth of the technology market in a major metropolitan city.

In the last two quarters alone, I have personally seen local lifestyle needs and home aesthetics weigh heavily on how well a home does on the market in direct relation to technology jobs in San Francisco that require a commute. More people are willing to commute to work if their neighborhoods provide a variety of healthy-living options, tech-savvy school districts, elite shopping and well-manicured parks.

Walnut Creek and the surrounding neighborhoods offers all of this to millennials who work in San Francisco but are starting families on the city’s outskirts.

Sam Benson, SRES, is a real estate broker in the greater Walnut Creek, California, area. You can follow him on Instagram and Facebook.

Email Sam Benson.

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