According to a recent study from the insurance company Country Financial, more than 25% of Millennials say that home ownership is their most highly prized life milestone, despite financial barriers. If you want to build homes that attract this demographic, here are some of the things millennials have identified as features on their wish lists.
Millennials like their smart devices and they want the same functionality and connectivity in their homes. Voice-activated devices can do the work, similar to appliances and fixtures. Nearly every major appliance maker features a variety of touchscreen refrigerators that can be voice controlled and can send alerts, but the technology can now be found in ovens, microwaves and dishwashers too.
At the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, a number of companies unveiled products with either Amazon’s Alexa or Google’s Assistant built in, along with microphones to record and transmit voice commands. For example, Kohler followed up last year’s introduction of its Kohler Konnect suite of voice- or motion-controlled showers, bathtubs, toilets and lights with a new voice-activated bathroom suite, in which everything features connected lighting that can be controlled via motion gesture, remote controller or voice.
Security systems and smart thermostats and doorbells, such as those from Nest; smart locks, from companies such as August and smart shades such as the Smart Film by SONTE are few other options to increase appeal to millennials.
Renewable energy and efficient appliances
Builders can appeal to millennials’ hearts and minds by offering renewable energy, such as solar panels, as well as energy-efficient appliances. The cost savings will be attractive from a budgetary standpoint, with the promise of paying less over the long term, but also as a matter of conscience for a generation that advocates for the reduction of carbon emissions and natural resource consumption. The Energysage solar cost calculator can help illustrate the long-term savings advantages.
While they are cost-conscious, millennials still care about good design. In a number of surveys, millennials indicated they want the creature comforts and plenty of interior room to move. Spacious and open floor plans, master bedrooms, finished basements, tile and stone finishes and luxury window coverings all ranked high among their preferences.
Market research presented at the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) 2018 International Builders’ Show indicated millennials are willing to compromise on space in exchange for luxury finishes. The research presented at the NAHB show found flexible spaces (think dining rooms big enough to hold gatherings of family and friends that also can double as a workspace) also are important, as are homes that are at least 1,000 square feet with three bedrooms and two bathrooms.
While surveys indicate millennials favor urban locations, they are not locked into the city. They still want homes — with yards — in good neighborhoods and in good school districts. And they prefer to be within walking distance to amenities like shops and restaurants.
Finding a way to offer these features at a price point for budget-conscious buyers who frequently fret about down payments and monthly expenses is a sure-fire way to make your homes attractive to millennials.