What Do Millennials Want From a Home?

A not-so-secret, incomplete guide to what Millennial homebuyers want from their abodes.

Paige Swope
The Great Millennial House Hunt

It’s no secret: Millennials are driving the surge in the housing market. Those born between 1981 and 1996 are now earning enough that they are having families and heading to the suburbs where they can get more space and a better education for the kids.

Household incomes for millennials are healthy, especially for those who have college degrees. The average millennial with a degree in 2018 was earning $56,000 and the average household income the same year was $71,400, according to Pew Research. Couple the millennials’ financial health with low interest rates and fast, online lending options, and it’s looking to be another very busy sales season.

Here’s what millennials want:

Millennials are choosing suburbs over cities

Suburbs over cities due to marrying and starting families, according to Freddie Mac. This leads to the desire for more space and quality school districts. In addition, remote work makes suburbs more attractive.

Outdoor space is a must

As their social calendars grow, millennials like open spaces—both indoors and out, according to Quicken Loans. Another study done by Rocket Mortgage emphasizes the need for fenced outdoor spaces for children and pets. Furthermore, the same study suggests that outdoor spaces may be more important than a garage or parking space.

Move-in ready preferred

Move-in-ready homes are appealing to buyers who want to avoid costly renovations such as new windows, plumbing and electrical systems. Many millennials spend much of their savings on a down payment and don’t have money left over for improvements of an older home, according to FHA Loans.

An extra bedroom or office space for working from home

With 52 percent of the remote work population being millennials, an extra bedroom or flexible open space is appealing. According to Gallup, a potential home office is a popular feature.

Energy-efficient appliances

Sustainable appliances such as refrigerators, microwaves and dishwashers that use less electricity and energy are attractive. So are advanced eco-friendly options such as solar panels. For the yard, plants that require less watering and no irrigation systems are appealing, according to Freddie Mac.

Smart, connected homes

Technology is important. According to Freddie Mac, the ability to control thermostats, lighting, and alarms from a mobile app is a desired feature. These apps can provide a feeling of safety and security, especially for those with young families.

This story is from the Spring/Summer 2022 issue of Home & Garden.