In the past, home owners  who entered their mid- or late 50s - and even early 60s - made the decision to  start downsizing their housing for a number of reasons. These days, the trend  appears to be moving in the opposite direction.

Traditionally, those who  were approaching retirement age would trade in their larger homes once their  kids grew up and moved out, and downsize to one that was both more affordable  and more practical for a two-person family. The smaller homes also allowed them  to start contributing more to their retirement funds since they were likely  paying less on their home loans, utilities and  upkeep.

But now, boomers, who  were expected to follow in the footsteps of previous generations for how they  approached the empty nest phase of their lives, are not doing so. Some are  hesitant to enter the housing market while it's still in a state of repair, and  are instead paying to renovate their homes to more closely fit their needs as  they age. Many who put their homes on the market in recent months found out the  hard way that selling a property these days is easier said than done, even with  interest rates sinking to near all-time lows.

"The challenge for them  is that we're in a market where people need X price to move and they can't get  the number," financial planner Raymond Carota of Brandywine Financial Group in  Center City Philadelphia, told the Philadelphia Inquirer. "My  recommendation is that they rent the property to obtain a revenue stream,  refinance to reduce the mortgage if necessary and keep the tax  advantage."

In general, the boomer  generation is reshaping how experts view the housing market for aging consumers.  Many are making decisions that older generations did not, including staying in  their larger family homes. Some are moving to foreign countries where care and  property are less expensive as a means of making retirement savings last  longer.

Experts also have  noticed that boomers are straying from many other conventions followed by  previous generations, such as staying in their careers for longer periods of  time to bolster their savings, and even working part-time after they retire to  supplement their income.

What unconventional  housing choices have you noticed among today’s  retirees?