Thursday, November 17, 2011

According to the US press (using Census data) the number of Americans ages 55 to 64 who moved to Sun Belt states since the recession has been on the decline.

The slowdown is part of a continued drop in the mobility of all Americans. Only 11.6% — 35 million — changed residence from 2010 to 2011, the lowest rate since the Census Bureau began collecting the statistics in 1948. In the mid-1980s, more than 20% were moving each year.

Instead of heading off to the sun the older boomers are staying put because they can't sell their homes or can't afford to retire. "There's economic uncertainty in all areas," says the head of marketing PulteGroup, the largest developer of 55-plus communities such as Del Webb and Sun City.

Recently I spent some time with a US developer of retirement villages and he was telling me just how tough it is to generate money for new developments. It seemed that at the top end of properties that things were holding up but at the high volume end it was tanking. I suspect the same could be said about the UK. Dick Stroud

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