What is a senior citizen?

Services for Real Estate Pros with Marte Cliff Copywriting

What is a Senior Citizen?

Unless you are a senior citizen, as I am, you may be tempted to think that “Senior Citizen” = “old Oops!person.” And if you’re thinking “old person” you may be putting us all into a category of real estate clients who are ready to:

  • Downsize
  • Move to a retirement community
  • Move to a retirement home

You may also think we’re necessarily in poor health and / or have diminished mental capacity.

While those statements do apply to some, if you paint us all with the same broad brush, you’re sadly mistaken.

If you stop and think about it, it's insane to lump everyone from 55 to 95+ in one group, even if we didn't all have individual personalites, likes, dislikes, states of health, dreams, goals, etc.

  • Some seniors want to move to a location with more opportunities to attend concerts, plays, sporting events, etc.
  • Some want to move to a condo, where someone else will take care of maintenance and they can be free to travel, pursue hobbies, do volunteer work, etc.
  • Some want to move somewhere that they can raise a garden or keep some livestock.
  • Some are happily starting new careers as entrepreneurs. (Yes – some are becoming real estate agents!)
  • Some are perfectly happy to stay in a house that’s become “too big,” so they’ll have room for children and grandchildren to come and visit.
  • Some want to sell the house, buy a motor home (or mount a horse), and hit the road.

Senior horseman traveling cross countryWhen we met this senior, he and his horses were traveling from the Pacific Coast to Minnesota.

In other words, senior citizens are just like any other age group – diverse.

Aside from being past the age of 55, about the only thing most (NOT all) of us have in common is that we’ve accumulated too much “stuff.” When we get ready to move, we face a huge job of sorting, packing the things we want to keep, and disposing of the rest.

That’s why, when I wrote the Senior Relocation prospecting letters, I was careful not to assume anything about the homeowner’s circumstances or future plans.

They’re filled with “you might” and “If you” statements. Many do mention the huge chore of packing and moving – while they offer assistance in the form of a list of trusted vendors who are available to help. They also offer to put the homeowner in touch with advisors who will show them how a sale will affect them financially.

If you’re interested in assisting senior citizens, these letters will help position you as a person who will help and advise – and never assume.

So get your set today – and get prospecting!


This post appeared first at: https://copybymarte.com/what-is-a-senior-citizen/

"Oops" courtesy of digitalart@freedigitalphotos.net



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Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker and Attorney Licensed in DC, MD, VA,

Thanks for making these excellent points. They are really good to keep in mind. You write such great letters. Anyone who needs some push in their marketing should just call you!

Jun 02, 2017 03:26 AM #25
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

This is similar to a post I just read regarding the reasons why millenials are not all the same. Neither are those above the age of 55. I think "senior" citizens should now be those above 80. Isn't 80 the new 60? 60 the new 40?

Jun 02, 2017 03:38 AM #26
Dorie Dillard
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.346.1799 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning Marte Cliff ,

As usual you knocked it out of the park on this one! Congratulations on a well deserved featured post. Every senior  is unique, and it's only by listening carefully that we will be able to discover how we can help them in "rightsizing". Never assume about anyone!

Jun 02, 2017 04:29 AM #27
Gary L. Waters, Broker Owner, Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC
Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC - Rockledge, FL
... a small office, delivering big service!

When I think senior I think of many things - none of which are old!

Jun 02, 2017 06:03 AM #28
John Wiley
Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty - Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL Real Estate GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Great post and it should remind us to stop putting everyone in a nice convenient box. Every person is an individual with their own quirks and needs.

Our job is to find out Who they are and What they want from life.


Jun 02, 2017 06:16 AM #29
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

You certainly can't judge by age.

I have relatives the exact same age and based on their activity you would never know it. 

Jun 02, 2017 06:53 AM #30
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Hi Marte, about time someone brought home the point that we senior citizens are not a homogenous group... we are very diverse. I am well into my senior years, as is my husband who'll be 79 on his next birthday. We still and will continue to live in a two story, 3,500 square foot home (we already downsized from 6,000 square feet). We have no desire to live in less space or in an adult community or in a patio home. And then there is the idea that people of my generation are not technologically savvy when looking for homes... HA!

Jun 02, 2017 07:29 AM #31
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

The longer I live, the more fortunate I feel. Passed the “Senior” thing a few years ago. I used to think that people who are my age were awfully old. Guess it depends on your point of view.

Jun 02, 2017 02:32 PM #33
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I remember getting really upset when Kroger gave me the senior discount when I was still in my 40s, but stopped coloring my hair. Sigh.  But my opinion of "old" is a sliding scale... it keeps going up.  

I have long worked in a climate and area where people retire and I feel a lot more equipped to do a good job for them now that I want a one level house myself.

Jun 02, 2017 02:46 PM #34
Paul McFadden
Paratex - Seattle, WA
Pest Control, Seattle, WA.

I probably am but refuse to admit it!

Jun 03, 2017 01:33 PM #35
Bill Cherry, Realtor - Dallas, TX
Broker & Wealth Coach

I'm coming up on 77 this monrh, but as far as I;m concerned if that's a problem, it's a problem for others, not for me.

About five years ago, my church --- which I lover very much --- sent me a goofy form letter that told me that I was a Senior Citizen.

I wrote the minister who included me on the Senior Citizen Mailing List that I was not a senior citizen, and that I would be glad to let him know when and if I ever became one.

There is nothing that I was able to do at 30 that I was not able to do when I passed 70, and that holds true as I prepare to turn 77.

I continue to work full time, for an example, and I have no intention of stopping. Boredom is what makes the brain evaporate into an old folks module.

The only time I'm willing to allow myself to be included in a Senior Citizen List is when to do so means I get a significant price discount.

So I suppose my point is that it is best to let the person you think qualifies as a Senior Citizen, tell you that he is..don't address him as that before then.

Jun 03, 2017 04:48 PM #36
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224


                      Thank you Marte Cliff 


Jun 03, 2017 05:17 PM #37
Joanna Cohlan
Fresh Eyes For Your Home - Chappaqua, NY
Designing, Decorating & Staging Westchester Homes

You got it Marte! Now that I am of a certain age-62- there are definitely senior options on Metro North and the movies - but I am still active, live in a house and feel like I have much of life before me.  Diversity is the key with any market segment!

Jun 04, 2017 09:29 AM #38
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

These 55+ communities in my area are not appealing to many that qualify to live there. Different people want different things, no matter what age group they are in.

Jun 04, 2017 09:41 AM #39
Beth Bromund
Coldwell Banker Weir Manuel - Rochester, MI
REALTOR (248) 651-3500

AARP sends membership info people when they turn 50!  Mine will be in the mail soon.  You make very valid points about not lumping all people into a single category of preferences based on a broad age category.  That's important to remember.

Jun 04, 2017 12:44 PM #40
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Specializing in Brookside, Waldo, Prairie Village

I've been struggling for  a while as to how to refer to retiring and downsizing baby boomers. 'Senior Citizen' sounds too dated. 'Older adults'--maybe that's not offensive.  Usually I end up using a phrase specific to the situation as in "I work with many adults who are ready to move to an easier lifestyle in terms of home maintenance' So long!

Jun 04, 2017 12:46 PM #41
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

Marte Cliff 

When you say senior citizen I think people in the 60s working a realtor. I came across an agent and thought he is really aging. He closed 10 deals last year 1-3M range. He told me he was born 1933. He is 84!

Jun 04, 2017 06:39 PM #42
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Condo & Home Sale Specialists

Oh my, I can relate to this. We deal with many "senior citizens"  in our business, and you are so right. None are the same. Different interests, different goals, different wants and needs. While many want to downzise, we just worked with a 55+ who only want a 6,000 sq ft home for her and her cats!

Jun 07, 2017 01:23 AM #43
Jan Green
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

So true!  Senior citizen is a vague term that doesn't necessarily put everyone in one category!

Jun 09, 2017 04:05 PM #44
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Age is simply a number and regardless of your age, it's how we feel that ultimately could affect our journey of life. In a way, we're all seniors as we age IMO, so with age comes knowledge, experiences, and wisdom. 

A senior, I believe is a person who identifies themselves as a senior, so at what age is that? It depends, doesn't it, on how they feel and how they define a senior.

Jun 18, 2017 07:21 AM #45
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