What’s the most popular amenity or property feature buyers look for in a home?
Today's buyers are looking for convenience. We are seeing more buyers looking for homes to be smart-wired, so they can control them from their smart devices. Everything from lighting and thermostat controls to security systems. As far as layouts, most Millennial buyers are still trending toward open spaces. In the luxury market, living and dining rooms are still important, but they don't necessarily need to be stuffy spaces that are infrequently used. Large kitchens and family room spaces are most desired as well as mud rooms and first-floor bedroom suites.
If a seller was looking to renovate his or her home on a budget prior to selling, what are the top two areas in a home that he or she should focus on improving? Which two spaces, if fully renovated, could boost the seller’s asking price the most?
One thing that has held true over the years is that the kitchen and baths sell a home. These are clearly the best two rooms in a house in which to invest money. If a seller can't afford to totally renovate a kitchen, just updating appliances and countertops and changing out hardware can make a huge difference. If the budget doesn't afford a kitchen or bathroom transformation, taking down wallpaper, removing carpet, and refinishing floors and giving a fresh coat of paint will go a long way.
What are your projections for the real estate industry in the next 10 years? Any trends you see happening?
Predicting the next 10 years is not easy. Based on what is happening in the market now, I think the market will remain steady for the next several years. As far as housing requirements, I think that the buyer pool will still want clean and simple spaces and that the trend toward smart-wired––as well as more energy-efficient and sustainable––homes will continue.