Millennials, or Gen Y, are often the most elusive homebuyers for builders to entice. They are frequently perceived as being difficult to please and unwilling to make the financial and lifestyle commitments associated with purchasing a new home. But, studies are showing that this may not be the case. Or, if it is, it may not be the case for long.
According to a 2019 study by the National Association of Realtors, millennials currently make up the largest share of potential homebuyers; however, this generations’ homeownership rate is statistically lower than that of older buyers. Much of this can be attributed to cautious behavior, stemming from delayed marriages, student loan debt and their memories of the housing crisis that haunted their parents and grandparents.
Essentially, they’re taking their time. They want to avoid regretting their new home purchase. So, if a builder wants to sell them a home, they have to know exactly what they’re looking for. Here are some of the more important things to consider and how your brand can present itself as the best place to find it.
Updated Kitchens and Baths
Not only are kitchens and bathrooms spaces that millennials know they will use every day, but they are also the most expensive areas of a home to update, and young homeowners clearly prioritize the smart investment of a home that won’t require this major upkeep.
Bright, properly exposed product photography of both is essential to communicate the quality you offer. If there’s something special about these rooms in your homes — like freestanding soaking tubs or granite countertops — make sure this is highlighted through detail-oriented social media posts and website photography.
Open Floor Plans
Conversely, formal dining rooms are not as high on millennial wish lists. These concepts can feel dated and constricting, especially as millennials tend to prefer freeform, minimalistic design concepts. Promote formal dining rooms less through channels that millennials frequent, such as Instagram, and use those platforms to focus instead on more open-concept designs.
It’s no secret that the environment is one of the biggest global concerns for millennials. According to a 2017 Ecowatch report, 78 percent are willing to change their lifestyle and shopping habits in an effort to help protect the environment.
Thus, highlighting the environmentally friendly features available in your new home designs can put you on the top of many millennials’ lists. Make sure your website has all the up-to-date information about your company’s commitment to energy efficiency in an easily accessible location so that new buyers can find it as they start to explore their options.
Social sites and cable news programs had a field day when SunTrust Mortgage survey from 2017 showed that “better space/yard for dog” was the third most popular answer as to why millennials choose to buy their first home.
As light-hearted as it seems, it’s still a very crucial factor to consider. Not only can renting be restrictive on the breeds or number of pets allowed, but most rentals also don’t have proper space for a family pet to live its best life, which is something that can easily give homeownership that competitive edge. Including imagery and messaging in your promotional items that convey happy people and happy pets enjoying the great backyards available with your townhomes and single-family homes is a great way to attract millennial buyers.
Significantly more technologically literate than their predecessors, millennials have a heightened sense of what information and who they can trust. A recent Forbes Communication Council report showed that 78% of millennial consumers are more likely to be loyal to a brand that they know is transparent, with 56% saying that they would be loyal to a completely transparent brand for life. Thus, straightforward marketing practices — not overly long disclaimers or complex, confusing jargon — are best to appeal to this discerning shopper.
Attention to five topics is only the first step toward unlocking the purchasing potential of this generation. Want to see how your company can better target millennial homebuyers? Get in touch with us to learn more about how we can help start expanding your brand’s horizons.