You hear the term “Millennial” a lot in the real estate business these days. Millennial’s are those aged 35 years or younger. The reason why is that this demographic is going to be an increasingly important part of the buyer pool as they reach the 30-35 year old range of the average first time home buyer.
While this age group has shown no hurry to settle down at a permanent address, 85% think homeownership is still “part of the American Dream” and a “Good Financial Decision” according to the National Association of Realtor’s Home Opportunities and Market Experience Survey, .
In working with a number of young buyers, we’ve learned that they have very definite ideas of what they’re looking for in their first home, be it resale or new construction. People considering selling their home in the future need to be aware of these factors as well, and make sure their home hits on as many of these points as possible before going on the market. Selling a home quickly and at the highest possible price means having the largest pool of potential buyers possible. Here’s our top 10 must-haves:
- Updated Kitchen & Baths – Young buyers are already maxed on price, so they have limited funds left over for major upgrades.
- Big Kitchen with Open Floor Plan – Where a formal dining room was important in years past, it’s all about a big open kitchen/family room combo to entertain in now.
- Home Office – Tech companies and others have more options for working from home than ever before – a dedicated space is essential.
- Low Maintenance – No spending the weekend pulling weeds for this generation, they’re too busy, work too hard and want the weekends free.
- Technology – Better have strong internet and cell service available – connection is the name of the game for young buyers.
- Energy Efficiency – All buyers, in general, are looking for energy efficient homes, but younger buyers are less likely to settle for 25 year old systems. Have something new and cutting edge in your home? Highlight it.
- The HGTV Influence – We’ve all seen the shows but it’s surprising how popular they are with the young sector. The homes are all perfectly staged in those shows to be comfortable and inviting. No having to “imagine what it would look like if”…
- Low HOA Dues – Young buyers are already pushing the ceiling on price, and we’ve seen high HOA dues be a deal killer for some areas.
- Online Photos/Videos/Virtual Tours – Trust us, they’re seeing homes first online. Put the appropriate money into professional photos, videos and other marketing materials.
- Location – Young buyers want to see homes that are close to public transportation and have good walking scores.
Builders have Millennial buyers in mind too. Pardee Homes, a subsidiary of Irvine, Calif.-based Tri Pointe Group, built a concept home – The Responsive Home – to show off at the National Association of Home Builders trade show in Las Vegas. (The pictures are of their homes)
The Responsive Home, specifically designed for buyers age 35 and younger, has an open-plan design, an outdoor kitchen, and a suite of rooms accessible by a side entrance. That way, the owner can take on a lodger or, if they decide to start a family, give the tenant the boot and reincorporate the rental space into the home. We really like that these features are creeping into home designs, what do you think?