Buying a house has always meant choosing the one with the collection of features that best meets the buyer's needs. NAHB economists, in their recent national survey of home buyers, asked respondents to identify which features of a home were important to have, which didn't matter to them, and which would stand in the way of a purchase.
The two charts below highlight the features are essential or desirable to the two age groups — boomers and elders — that make up the mature market.
Energy-efficiency is a high priority for the age 55-to-64 cohort — boomers — with four energy-related categories making it into their top 10 choices. Boomers considering retirement are looking hard at features that will save them money in the long run — features that they can afford to pay more for now, but will result in lower monthly expenses in retirement.
Energy efficiency also is important to the oldest age group. That group, however, is less likely than boomers to insist on an Energy-Star rated home or one that has Energy-Star rated windows. They put a higher value on laundry rooms and ceiling fans, as well as having table space for eating.
The complete consumer preference survey, What Home Buyers Really Want, is available from BuilderBooks.com.
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