The National Association of Home Builders last published an article on how long buyers remain in their homes in early 2009. The 2009 article showed that, based on a long-run calculation that averaged the available data over the years 1985 through 2007, the typical buyer could be expected to stay in a single-family home roughly 12 years before moving out.
Since then, the economy has gone through a severe recession, with homes and home buyers subject to historically unusual changes and stress, making this a logical time to revisit the data and see if things may have changed.
This article revisits the length of time buyers are expected to remain in their homes, using data that has recently become available from the 2011 American Housing Survey (AHS, funded by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and conducted in odd-numbered years by the Census Bureau). The new data show that homeowner mobility has generally declined since 2007, and—if based only on mobility rates calculated from the most recent data—the expected length of stay in a single-family home would be about 16 years.
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