New generation of homebuyers have new ideas about “home”

The post-baby boom generation, Generation Y, is growing in the influence they have over the current real estate market.  They definitely have different wants when it comes to home buying than their parents.

When it comes to outdoor space, they want a place where they can spend time with friends and cook outdoors.  A common patio is far more desirable than the large lawn their parents sought.  Outdoor fire pits are an architectural feature that takes advantage of this trend, as well as community spaces such as swimming pools that can be shared by neighbors or tenants.  Community rooms, fitness areas, and movie-screening theaters are all examples of structures that lend a community feeling to any sort of complex, and Generation Y is willing to pay for such amenities.  They also want to be able to walk around their neighborhood as opposed to being completely dependent on their car.

For indoor space, smaller rooms and fewer large hallways are popular.  Generation Y also prefers large shower stalls as opposed to the large bathtubs their parents have.  They do desire a large living space to accommodate a home theater set-up, which is central to this generation’s lifestyle.  Family gatherings and dinner parties are more centered around the television than the dining table like during the baby boom generation.  There are also fewer kids and more dogs in this generation, making a nook for a dog bed highly desirable.

In San Francisco, it’s not as realistic to hold out for the ideal Generation Y outdoor atmosphere.  Also, in The City a lot of houses have a historic feel that is desirable amongst local buyers.  The apartments and condos that do have the desirable community features aren’t suitable for families or couples looking to start families.  All the features that Generation Y seeks are available in the suburbs outside of San Francisco, but the main problem in the Bay Area is the affordability for this generation as they leave college with student debt and entry level jobs.  They just cannot afford these features yet in the Bay Area.

Information gathered from

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