What Buyers REALLY Want: Data Analysis

Uncovering the desires and needs of prospective homeowners is a critical part of our mission. Through detailed, recent interviews with over 300 buyers, we’ve gathered invaluable insights that could help future buyers articulate their preferences and guide sellers in making strategic updates to attract the right buyer. If you’re considering selling and there’s hardwood hiding under that old carpet, it might be time for an upgrade—rip it off and let that wood shine!

Navigating Financial Decisions: How Buyers Manage Their Budgets

Our clients range from first-time homebuyers to those in the market for luxury estates, with budgets spanning from $100,000 to $10,000,000. Among those who successfully closed on a home, the data reveals nuanced financial decisions: 28.2% exceeded their maximum budget, while a significant 71.8% managed to stay under their initial financial limit. On average, the final purchase price for all closed transactions was 98.88% of the buyer’s maximum budget, demonstrating a high level of adherence to financial constraints.
What Real Estate Buyers Really Want - Budget Adherence

Diverse Property Preferences: What Are Buyers Choosing?

Among our buyers, preferences for property types varied, with 75.2% opting for condos, 26.5% seeking single-family homes, 14.5% interested in townhomes, and 6.8% exploring multi-family dwellings*. Notably, within the condo-seeking group, 30% expressed a specific preference for smaller condo buildings.
What Real Estate Buyers Really Want - Property Type Preferences

Home Size Specifications: What Buyers Are Looking For

19.7% of buyers that specified a size preference were looking for homes smaller than 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. The vast majority (80.3%) of buyers wanted 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms or larger homes when they stated a size preference.

Home Decor Styles in Demand

The majority of buyers who mentioned home decor were looking for modern/contemporary decor of the home (52.17%). Vintage homes charmed 16.30% of buyers, and transitional styles appealed to 14.13%. Additionally, 10.87% of homebuyers indicated flexibility and openness to different, even contrasting styles of decor. The rest (6.52%) were looking for unique and specific styles such as lofts or fixer-uppers.
What Real Estate Buyers Really Want - Home Style Preferences

Must-Have Features and Wants

When it comes to the most desired features buyers are seeking, a few key priorities emerged from the data. The most often mentioned desired features were an abundance of natural light and private outdoor spaces like a yard, patio, balcony, or deck area. Open floor plans were also commonly cited.
Many buyer preferences mentioned flooring—first and foremost, hardwood floors were the overwhelming flooring preference, with 71.42% of buyers who mentioned flooring specifics calling out a desire for real hardwood floors. In-unit laundry was another must-have amenity that came up repeatedly, with countless buyers across property types emphasizing the need for a washer/dryer setup or hook-ups within their homes. Other notable wants included newly updated kitchens, ample closet space, and the ability to accommodate pets. Some buyers mentioned they require buildings that allow renting out the unit.

Proximity to public transportation and parking was also important to the buyers interviewed. 67% of buyers stated that they require some form of parking, including street parking, private parking, or a private garage. 35% of buyers requested at least one garage parking space—and one client stated that it was a “must” to have at least a 4-car parking garage.

School districts were sometimes mentioned as a deciding factor.

Deal Breakers and Non-Negotiables

The most frequently mentioned “Must Not Have” features were: dark dwellings lacking natural light, garden/ground floor units, high-rises, buildings with rental restrictions, and homes requiring major renovations. Multiple buyers mentioned they strongly dislike carpets, some were not fond of very dark floors, and some specifically stated high HOAs are a problem. For many buyers, understandably, buildings that do not allow pets were an obstacle.
What Real Estate Buyers Really Want - Buyer Preferences - Features

Most Unique Buyer Requests

The primary bathroom large enough to fit a clawfoot bathtub, dark window frames, or a strong hood in the kitchen were among the most unique desires. One buyer client stated they must live in a high-rise but below the 6th floor.

Buyers’ needs and desires sometimes overlap, and sometimes they are very unique—but they all share one thing in common: there’s a dream home out there for everyone. Finding THE ONE home that meets all your needs, desires, and dreams involves a blend of magic and meticulous work. That’s why we engage in extensive discussions with our buyers, aiming to thoroughly identify all the features they desire. This allows us to leverage every tool and expertise we’ve gained from decades of experience to find a home that’s uniquely yours.

If you are considering buying a home, contact us. We will be very happy to move mountains and sift through the gravel one stone at a time to find that golden nugget, your dream home.

*If the total is more than 100%, it means that buyers selected multiple options.