“I think it’s economics driving the desire,” says Paul A. Cardis, CEO of AVID Ratings Co., which conducts the annual survey.
The economy and demographics are playing an increasingly larger role in buyers’ choices these days. According to AVID’s survey, some of the must-have features in homes today are:
- Energy-efficiency. Buyers of all types—first-time, empty-nester, move-up and vacation buyers—all want energy-efficient appliances, high-efficiency insulation and high window efficiency.
- Large kitchens. Although home size is trending down, Cardis says that “the kitchen is still king.” A kitchen island is also a must-have.
- Granite countertops. This is a must feature for move-up, empty-nester, vacation and custom homebuyers. First time buyers are less interested in granite, probably due to the cost.
- Main-floor master suite. Cardis says this is due to the aging of the population. The demand for upstairs laundries is waning as a result.
- Home office/study. People would rather have a home office than other rooms such as a formal dining room, Cardis says.
- Two-car garages. All types of buyers consider these as must-haves, while move-up and custom home buyers prefer three-cars.
- Master suite soaker tubs. These are more popular than whirlpools among all categories of buyers. Oversized showers with seating are also growing in demand.
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