Friday 29 March 2013

What Do Buyers Really Want in a Home?

What sets one home apart from another as buyers are touring homes? What features do buyers truly need, and which amenities would they merely view as a bonus? The National Association of Realtors has tried to answer those questions (and more) with the recently released 2013 Profile of Buyers' Home Feature Preferences. The survey was completed by buyers who purchased a home between 2010 and 2012.
According to the study:
The typical buyer bought a home with three bedrooms and two full bathrooms. About half of homes purchased were on a single level, while two-fifths were on two levels. Garages were more popular among buyers of new homes, homes in the Midwest, and homes in the suburbs. Fireplaces were most common in higher priced homes, homes in resort or recreation areas, and in detached single-family homes. Forty-one percent of homes had basements, which could be finished, partially finished or unfinished. Finished basements were more popular among single males, younger home buyers, and buyers in the Northeast and Midwest.
For sellers who are looking at remodeling, and want to make sure their renovation dollars are well spent, this could be a road map of what to update or add to their homes. Some other highlights:
  • 78% of buyers chose a home with a garage
  • 58% purchased a home with a fireplace
  • New kitchen appliances were more important to buyers than granite countertops
  • 69% of buyers who didn't buy a home with new appliances would have been willing to pay more for a home that had them
  • Among buyers 55 and older, 42% rated a single level home style very important, compared to only 11% of buyers under 35
  • Buyers were willing to pay a higher dollar value for an in-law suite and a basement than other extra room types.
  • The feature that had the highest dollar value buyers were willing to pay extra for? Waterfront location.
  • 53% of buyers started a home improvement project within 3 months of buying, typically in the kitchen.
  • The majority of buyers wanted more or larger closets and more storage.
The great news is that 97% were satisfied with their home purchase. Learn more about the profile here. If you are like me, and enjoy following along with data and trends, you can 'like' the NAR Research Group's Facebook page.


By Heather Elias Director of Social Business Practice at National Association of REALTORS®

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