Creating House Plans to Fit Younger Generations
Younger Home Buyers have Different Preferences in their Homes.
Younger home buyers have different preferences in their homes, house plans and layouts than the Baby Boomer generation. The challenge? Millennials are tough to pin down when it comes to their housing preferences. Here’s why the people buying homes now are different from the group that will be entering the market in the next ten to fifteen years and how you as a builder can benefit from making changes to your designs now.
First of all, there’s a lot of these buyers. Millennials, also known as Generation Y (or the Echo Boomers), have numbers over 80 million in the United States alone. The Census Bureau estimates that there could be 92.9 million members of their generation by 2025. They are difficult to characterize because they’re hard to define. The youngest are teens now, while their older brothers and sisters are in their early 30s. Singles may be looking for an unfettered, urban lifestyle on the go, while others are looking for the traditional homes they remember from their own childhoods in order to raise their family. One millennial may be in his mid-20’s, failing socially and wrapped up in video games and other virtual realities. Another millennial of the same age might just have sold his startup for 100 million to Google and is looking to buy his own estate. The range of Millennials purchasing homes and their house plans, needs and desires are very wide.
Right now, younger millennials are drawn to rental housing more than for-sale housing, partly because of their youth and partly because mortgage financing is more difficult to obtain for them than it was for their parents. Many millennials also don’t know where they will be five years from now, so settling on a home can be daunting.
Valuing the Anti-Commute.
Many millennials were latch-key kids who saw their parents suffer from the effects of long commutes, so they often reject the traditional suburban experience that would make them dependent on a vehicle. Walkable neighborhoods, bike-able communities and access to public transportation are all factors in the decisions of older millennials to buy property. They are also seeking out authentic lifestyles and space that functions well for social gatherings, cooking, entertainment and hobbies. They also really value their communities for the opportunity for social and cultural interactions. Keeping all of these factors in mind will help builders in the long run when millennials start making a dramatic impact on the housing market.
Have you noticed any trends with your millennial customers? Let us know what you’ve learned in the comments.
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