Now that the Millennial generation has come into their own and reached adulthood, they have impacted every industry in a substantial way. They’re not only the largest generation in the U.S., they are also the most technologically savvy and eco-conscious. All of this has had a huge affect on real estate and home building.
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) notes that Millennials are now the biggest segment of home buyers in the country, and their presence has been growing for the last five years. That means real estate agents and builders are paying careful attention to what Millennials want in a home.
Energy Efficient Homes With Multi-Purpose Open Spaces
It’s no surprise that energy efficiency is a top priority for Millennial home buyers. This trend is being driven by the desire to be eco-friendly and saving money – something that’s always on the mind of Millennial home buyers.
Another Millennial trend that’s making its mark on home design is open, multi-purpose rooms. Open floor plans have been popular for years, but Millennials are leading the movement towards multi-functional spaces with moveable walls and smooth transitions that allow rooms to serve several purposes. Instead of walls sectioning off living spaces, Millennials prefer nooks and alcoves around the edge of large, open spaces that offer more flexibility.
Buying for Investment
Millennial home buyers aren’t just thinking about what they want in a home. They’re also thinking about how it will appreciate down the road. That’s because the vast majority of these young buyers (85%) see their home as an investment.
As such, Millennials are putting thought into resale value when they purchase a home. For buyers that are building a new home, universally appealing features are at the forefront of design and customization decisions.
Outer Edge Suburban Areas Are Prime for Building
Millennials aren’t just influencing how homes are built and remodeled. Where homes are built is also being impacted. Not too long ago, Millennials were all about urban life in the center of the city. Now that they are getting older and 48% have children under the age of 18 in their home, more Millennials are moving to the suburbs.
However, Millennials still highly value a short commute. That’s why “commuter suburbs” or “semi-suburbs” just on the outskirts of the city limits are becoming hot spots for young home buyers. Builders who are targeting this growing demographic are turning their focus to creating communities in areas that aren’t far from city centers and major employers.
Millennial home buyers also favor “suburb” areas and communities that have an inner city feel. They tend to gravitate to suburban communities that are walkable and have a variety of entertainment options while still offering safety, good schools and affordability.
Technology That Makes Custom Home Building Easier
Millennials are unique home buyers in that they’ve never known a time without computers. Only the very oldest remember a time before the Internet. They’re a generation that’s used to having information at their fingertips.
Because of this, Millennial home buyers are typically more informed and gather more information than their older counterparts. They’re also early adopters and the first to use technology to their advantage.
Not surprisingly, Millennials are welcoming the idea of virtual reality (VR) tools in the home design process. Many home builders now believe VR experiences are the key to attracting more Millennial buyers who want a new custom home that fits their individual personality. VR allows them to truly visualize what their custom home will be like before building gets underway.
Buyers that aren’t limited to the model home and can virtually tour multiple floor plans with an array of personalized options are less hesitant about the building process. They’re also more likely to go beyond the basics when they can see how certain features impact the home design.
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