What Buyers Want!

 

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Predictions are being floated from many, that the housing market will heat up over the 2015 – 2016 time period, and that makes me wonder what home features buyers will be looking for in the future. We know that for many current buyers granite counter tops, natural wood cabinetry, and minimal carpeting are highly desireable. There’s a strong expectation from buyers that homes in the median price range will be move-in ready with these updates in place. What does the future hold for buyer desires?

One pretty reliable way to predict what buyers will want in the future is to consider the current luxury market. Many of the recent expected upgrades were first seen in homes priced over $1,000,000. Looking at what we see becoming popular in that market today can give us some clues as to what average home buyers will be seeking tomorrow. Redfin, on its blog, suggests the following home feature trends in demand in the luxury market:

Kitchens

White kitchen cabinets with quartz countertops are becoming more common. I’ve already seen the recent white kitchen cabinet upgrades in homes priced between $300,000 and $600,000. Working with buyers in that price range who prefer dark cabinetry is becoming increasingly challenging. Quartz countertops will eventually cause granite countertops to appear dated. Quartz, which tends to be more resilient, is being paired with white cabinets and stainless steel appliances to create a more modern look to kitchens.

Baths

Luxury showers are in high demand and fewer high end homes are being built with a tub in the master bath. Instead, stand alone, walk in showers with multiple shower heads and seating are what buyers will be looking for even in more moderately priced homes I’ve seen more demand for larger showers with no tub in the master bath from baby boomers who anticipate that the ease of getting in and out of a tub will diminish over the years, and prefer the convenience of a large, comfortable shower.

Backyards

The yard is being treated like another room of the house and we’ve certainly seen the style and quality (and prices) of outdoor furniture reflect that in recent years.  Luxury home buyers expect no less than full outdoor kitchens, built in fireplaces or fire pits, and natural looking pools with lush, green plants and trees. Buyers are hoping for “resort style” yards in which they can easily entertain year round. In Arizona that means long covered patio’s with ceiling fans and misting systems.

Tasting rooms

3 of the last 12 homes that I’ve shown in the $300,000 to $450,000 price range have had wine refrigerators integrated into the kitchens.  I recently discovered that one can have a separate cooling space for beer, called a kegerator! We seem to be taking our alcoholic beverages very seriously, so why not a room devoted to a favorite pastime? What else are you going to do with that extra room when the kids move out? (The room you REALLY needed when the kids lived at home!).

It may be a little extreme to consider making your backyard look like the grounds of the Phoenician, or devoting an entire room to wine tasting, but it helps to be aware of the types of upgraded buyers will be placing a high value on. When you’re ready to do a little work around your home, be sure to keep an eye on resale value and the types of upgrades that will make your home sell quickly.

 

 

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