As more and more houses are being built, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) survey discovered that builders are not changing their product to meet the changing consumer desires. This survey was released during the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Show a week ago, and reported that the size and configuration of homes constructed in 2017 changed only slightly from prior years while there was an average increase of 9% more homes built.
Home sizes had been drifting down the past few years, but last year the average size increased slightly. In 2016 the average size home was 2,622 square foot (sqft) and in 2017, it increased to 2,627 sqft in 2017. Additionally, 46% of homes had four bedrooms versus 45% in 2016 and 37% had at least three full baths contrasted with 35% in 2016.
The biggest hurdle for home builders is affordability primarily with being able to find suitable lots along with the labor shortages that are pushing up wages. 65% of those builders surveyed believe these hurdles will continue. Rose Quint, Assistant VP of survey research for NAHB, said 79% of people looking to purchase can only afford half the homes in the market where they live or work, but many are still hopeful they will find a home within the next year.
In spite of worries over affordability, builders don’t seem prepared to downsize their houses. The study shows that homes built this year “will most likely include a walk-in closet in the master bedroom, separate laundry room, a great room, nine-foot ceilings on the main floor and granite kitchen counters.” Some will also offer extra features like low-E windows and Energy Star certified appliances and windows.
The NAHB survey also identified that 53% of homebuyers (mostly millennials) might consider buying a home of 600 sqft or less at some point in their lives but seniors and baby boomers are not embracing the “tiny house” fad. The report also shows that people are staying in their houses longer than they used to with an average of 12-13 years. Additional sources (Traditional Home and Better Homes and Gardens) were also cited in the survey saying 80% of female homeowners want to make improvements this year ranging from painting a room to full blown improvements in the kitchen, bath, flooring or outdoor spaces.
The average homebuyer buyer (defined as a household income of $125k or less) is more likely to do improvements themselves placing more emphasis on cost rather than quality with Energy-efficient improvements ranking high. Luxury homebuyers, however, placed more value on outdoor spaces from fireplaces to furniture as well as high end expansive kitchen and bathroom makeovers.
The surprising trend from the Better Homes and Garden survey is that the “great room” that has been a must for the past 30 years is becoming less important with the desire for more defined living spaces.
Are you thinking of renovating, building or buying a pre-owned home? Give me a call or go to my website and I will find the best fit mortgage for your needs. Julie C. Nichols – GMFS Mortgage – 469-786-8662 – www.julieCnichols.com.
The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.
Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.
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