Due to their potential impact on legacy incomes over the next three decades, we have conducted extensive research into baby boomers and legacies since 2007.

Now in their fifties and sixties, baby boomers represent a key audience for legacy fundraisers. Compared to previous generations – and perhaps the ones that follow – they are significantly more affluent. Our research suggests a  greater openness to the idea of leaving a charitable will.  But the boomers also have many other demands on their energies, assets and emotions. How can we ensure that they continue to make space for charity in their wills?

For summaries of our key findings, please request a copy of Legacy Giving 2050 here

“As a generation, the Boomers are charitably-minded … they are also demanding, want control and proof of value.”

Legacy Giving 2050

What we have learned

Our most recent baby boomer project, Legacy Giving 2050 (2014), assessed the long-term outlook for legacy giving in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Focusing on two key cohorts -  the ‘war babies’ (born 1930 to 1945) and the ‘core boomers’ (born 1946 – 1957) - it explored whether the ‘crunch’ had resulted in changes in donor behaviour and attitudes that could have a lasting impact on legacy giving. We found that

  • As a generation, the Boomers are charitably-minded. But they are also demanding, want control and proof of ‘value’
  • Despite the economic recovery, recognition that we live in a global ‘risk society’ has not dissipated – this means that donors are delaying making legacy decisions as long as possible
  • Consumers continue to be canny with their money, shopping around for bargains whenever possible. The internet has made this process easier, triggering a more consumerist attitude to ‘suppliers’ of all kinds – including charities.
  • Boomers (especially the childless) are more willing to downsize their home to save costs and release capital
  • Now more than ever, for those with offspring, family needs – now and into the future – are often seen as paramount, leaving little space for charity
  • But it’s not all doom and gloom. The more people can see an easy or imaginative way to include charities in their wills, the more they will do so.

The results of this research were used to update Legacy Foresight’s long-term legacy market model, with forecasts out to 2050.

Want to know more?

For more key findings, including our long-term market forecasts, please request a copy of Legacy Giving 2050 here

We plan to conduct new baby boomer research in 2018, which will focus on the widening intergenerational wealth divide and emerging financial challenges facing the boomer cohort. For more information on this, please contact Meg Abdy, Director.

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