According to the National Association of Realtors’ 2016 study of generational housing trends, millennials (those born between 1980 and 2000) make up the largest segment of the buyer market (35%). So, making your home more “millennial friendly” is an important part of any marketing plan when deciding to sell your home. Here are some “must have” features for today’s younger buyers:
Open Floor Plans:
Millennials are attracted to large, open spaces where they can entertain family and guests in one big space. A home with fewer walls provides a more multi-functional space allowing them to be more creative with their home. If your home is compartmentalized into several smaller rooms, look for ways to open up or completely remove walls in order to create fewer, but larger rooms that flow together.
Updated Kitchen and Bathrooms:
Most young buyers do not have the extra money needed to remodel the kitchen and bathrooms after moving into their new home; so, they are attracted to homes that already have granite counters, upgraded cabinets and hardware, tile backsplashes, and stainless steel appliances. Also, opening up the kitchen area, if possible, so it flows into the family room and/or dining room would definitely attract millennial buyers. To save money, try painting existing cabinets/vanities and adding new hardware rather than completely replacing everything.
Due to a number of technological advancements, many millennials are able to work from home. Therefore, having a space that can be used as a home office is a great feature to any home. This can be accomplished by simply adding double doors to a living room, formal dining area, or even an extra guest bedroom. Young buyers are less drawn to formal living and dining rooms, and will find a home office much more functional.
More than ever before, buyers are looking for energy efficient homes. Concern about the environment and saving money are both driving forces behind their desire for a highly energy efficient home. So, be prepared to either update elements of your home to increase the efficiency or to have buyers negotiate the price to offset their plans to upgrade these items after closing.
Low Maintenance Living:
Young buyers are less interested in spending their free time working on the yard and fixing up their homes. They want a home that is easy to keep clean and maintained. Smaller yards requiring less gardening and lawn upkeep, and interior materials that last a long time and are easy to take care are a priority for millennial buyers.
Location, Location, Location:
Although you can’t change the location of the home you are selling, you and your real estate agent should be able to provide buyers with distances to local grocery stores, restaurants, parks, schools, and walk/bike baths. Rising gas prices, commute times, and lifestyle changes have led millennials to seek out more walkable communities. They want to be able to do more and more of their errands and activities without needing a car. Incorporating your home’s walkability factor into your marketing plan will help attract many more young buyers.
To attract young home buyers, you not only have to think about how to make your home more technologically friendly, but you have to use it as your main marketing tool. There are a variety of products that allow you to turn your home into a “smart” home whereby you can control things like your lighting, appliances, and thermostat remotely. Millennials don’t want to have to worry all day if they left their lights or oven on, or left their temperature set too high, they want to be able to control and monitor everything on their mobile devices. Also, when looking for their next home, the majority of their home buying time is spent online. So, make sure your real estate agent is technologically savvy and has a strong online presence. According to the National Association of Realtors, 94% of millennials use the internet to search for homes. So, professional photos posted online on a variety of real estate sites and social media outlets is a key part of marketing a home to millennials.
Builders are designing homes to meet the needs of today’s young buyers; so, home owners have to make the necessary changes in their homes and their marketing plans to compete with these new construction homes. To learn more about marketing specifically to the millennials in your community, contact The Alfriend Group for your free listing consultation and home valuation today!