Don’t roll out the shag carpet for new home buyers

August 29, 2018

Does your home have avocado-green appliances, macramé hangings, or shag carpeting? Avocado may rule the menu these days, but as a choice for home furnishings? Not so much.

While many U.S. homeowners have kept their digs up-to-date and on-trend, the reality is that most homes still have outdated design elements., according to results of a recent poll posted on Builder online.

In fact, 70% of new or prospective home buyers report having outdated design features in their current residences. The six most common culprits for remodel-worthy features are:  linoleum floors (40%), popcorn ceilings (29%), wood paneling (28%), ceramic tile countertops (28%), shag carpeting (19%) and even avocado green appliances (8%)—according to a consumer survey conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of Scottsdale, Arizona-based builder Taylor Morrison.

“This is why real and virtual house hunting is so popular,” says Sheryl Palmer, Taylor Morrison chairman and chief executive officer. “We all love to daydream and envision ourselves in a beautiful new environment. But keeping up with ever-evolving preferences for paint colors, home features, new technologies and how we expect to use our homes over the years, is difficult. We also know that home interior preferences vary by generation, by home style, by region, even by city.”

The firm relies on data from national consumer surveys like this one to stay focused on what home-buyers want, and address changing interests across all generations, Palmer adds.

Which features bring more buyers to new homes? Below are some highlights of the survey:

  • Overall, energy efficiency (62%), floor plans that can be personalized (58%) and easier maintenance (56% percent), are preferred over items like the latest technology (38%).
  • Inside a new home, wood flooring (65%) is considered the most essential feature, followed by USB and Ethernet ports (44%), a whirlpool tub (36%), and a sun room (34%). Millennials showed more of an affinity than older generations for a whirlpool tub (39% vs. 32%), home theater (30% vs. 24%), and wine refrigerator or cellar (21% vs. 12%).
  • When all generations were asked to describe how they use their existing dining rooms, 80% of   said, “I use it as a dining room,” versus 65% of Millennials—who are interested in nontraditional uses of this traditional space. In fact, more than one in four (30%) of those with a dining room say they use this space for something other than dining, and most often as an office, game room, or craft room.
  • Soft natural tones (77%) were the more popular interior paint colors for recent and prospective home buyers. However, deep, rich tones (54%) soon could take over. Nearly three in five (59%) Millennials want the interior walls of their home painted with darker, rich colors, compared to just 49% of their older counterparts.

Research contact: @Jenn4Builder

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