A recent survey of luxury homeowners by Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate sheds some light on how these consumers view the current real estate market and what they are looking for in a new home. How do these finding match up with your feelings about real estate?
I will admit that I was a little surprised to find that 75 percent of the 500 luxury homebuyers surveyed believe that homeownership is a more sound investment than the stock market. Granted, the stock market hasn’t exactly been on fire lately but the real estate market is still recovering from The Great Recession and many houses are still under water.
What do you consider to be a better indicator of your success, your job title or the fact that you own a home? If you answered home ownership then you might be a luxury home owner. Almost 60% of survey respondents answered the same way.
Another indicator that luxury home buyers are confident in the real estate market can be seen in their preference to own multiple “lifestyle” homes. More than half of those surveyed (58%) said they own multiple homes to support their lifestyle activities. The way I read this is vacation homes. Maybe not every “other” home is located in what most would consider a vacation destination but for the luxury home owner, having a condo downtown in addition to a house at the beach and/or in the mountains makes sense for their lifestyle.
When most of us think about a luxury home we think of a huge house, on a big lot with a three or four car garage but for those surveyed bigger isn’t necessarily better – or more luxurious. In fact, 60 percent of luxury homebuyers surveyed would rather have as many upgrades as they can afford in their home, rather than more square footage. Similarly, nearly all (94%) luxury homebuyers surveyed would be willing to give up 1,000 square feet of living space from their next home in order to get a lifestyle amenity they desire, such as; living in a better neighborhood (54%), living in a house with “character” (51%), more land (44%), access to dining and entertainment (39%), and a shorter commute (38%).
Taking their preference for upgrades and amenities one step further, 66 percent of luxury homebuyers responded to the survey by saying that a “smart” home is more important to them than a “green” home. In fact, 87 percent of those surveyed said they would not consider living in a home that isn’t tech-friendly. Even though technology is important to luxury home owners three of the top five “must-haves” for those buying a luxury home are not tech related: 53% wanted a garden oasis, 50% wanted an outdoor fireplace or fire pit, and 47% wanted a separate guest house outside of the main home.
Now we know what 500 luxury home buyers/owners look for in their next home. Take a look below at the luxury homes listed for sale in Bend. How do you think they match up with the survey results?