Generational Impact on Residential Housing
Every year the National Association of Realtors publishes a report assessing the generational trends of home buying. For the last six years, millennials have made up the largest share of home buyers. The boomerang generation has moved from their parents’ basement into the housing market. Analysts expect that millennial home buyers will only increase in the next few years and will become a dominant force in the residential real estate sector. In many ways, millennials are like the generations that have come before them. For example, nearly half still choose to live in the suburbs. At the same time, there are some key preferences that set them apart. While suburbia is popular, more than any other generational group, millennials are more likely to look for housing in a city. This generation is also more likely to want something new rather than to renovate something old. In a recent survey, millennials were the most likely age group to seek out a new home offered by a builder.
Because many millennials delayed their entry into the housing market, some in this group have more disposable income and are skipping the starter home and committing to larger, more deluxe homes. In this segment, many are looking for homes with added amenities like exercise rooms, game rooms or home offices.
Smart home concepts are well received by millennials and are expected to be in-demand when the digital natives of Gen Z begin buying homes. Surveys show an increased interest in sensor technology to protect homes against everything from water and crime to indoor air quality and frozen pipes. Many homes are being built with special closets where routers, servers and security systems can be housed with backup power supplies. The younger generations are also environmentally conscious. While some surveys show a lack of interest in spending more for an environmentally friendly home, many homebuilders are seeing an increase in demand for things like solar panels.
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