National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released a study stating that young buyers are taking over. The younger generations (Generation X & Millennials) are becoming increasingly significant parts of the housing market.
NAR 2015 Study : Generational Housing Trends
We plotted out the results of 2015 National Association of Realtors study on generational housing trends, as you can see, the largest group of buyers are the 2 youngest group: Millennial & Generation X. (source)
WHAT THIS DATA MEANS
- Like it or not, Millennials has the buying power now. In 2014, the Millennial was the largest age group that purchased homes.
- Because of that, get your home turn-key ready, or as much as you can. This is the generation of instant gratifications. These are also young busy professionals who may have a young family, so the group tends to prefer a turnkey home that is low maintenance or no work involved.
New Homes v. Previously Owned Homes
In another NAR study published last November: New home purchasers bought a new home to avoid renovations or problems with plumbing or electrical, and the ability to customize their home. Home buyers who bought previously owned homes purchased their home for a better price and overall value and the charm and character their home provides. (source)
WHAT THIS MEANS
When you have older homes, highlight the personality and the character of your home, things like original hardwood floors, architecture details, original light fixtures, etc. can all add charm and appeal to your home.
You should also do some research to figure out who your target buyers are. Millennial buyers are looking for different features than Generation X buyers. Think about it, millennial buyers are mostly single and young professional, so having a home that is low or easy to maintain will be a higher priority comparing to Generation X buyers who are more experienced with taking care of a home.
Another important observation this report has pointed out: Environmental friendly features are considered very important by buyers regardless of age. Due to the increase of utilities and water costs (especially areas like California that are suffering serious draughts), green & energy efficient features are considered as very important by today's buyers. (source)
How Buyers Buy
Another important part of the survey is how buyers buy: Regardless of their age, buyers used a wide variety of resources in searching for a home, with the Internet (88 percent) and real estate agents (87 percent) leading the way. Millennials were the most likely to use a real estate agent, mobile or tablet applications, and mobile or tablet search engines during their search; Gen X buyers were the most likely to use an open house.
Although the Internet was the top source of where millennials found the home they purchased (51 percent), they also used an agent to purchase their home at a higher share (90 percent) than all other generations. (source)
Among all generations of home buyers, the first step in the home buying process is looking online for properties for sale. Younger generations of buyers typically find the home they purchase through the internet, while older generations of buyers first found the home they purchased through their real estate agent. (source)
What This Means For You
- Make sure you have your home professionally photographed & shows great online.
- Even though most buyers may use internet to search for new homes, most of the home buyers still hire and rely heavily on real estate agents. So make sure you have a great one who is well-connected and knows how to market your listing properly.
- Open houses may sound traditional, but Generation X buyers still do it. So it is important to hire an experienced agent who knows how to market your home, as well as making sure that you will maximize the benefits of open houses.