3 Ways to Renovate a Home for Millennials

The millennial generation is primed and ready to step into home ownership. First-time buyers accounted for 29 percent of sales in September, according to the National Association of REALTORS® latest housing report. Echoing this, a new report from the Commerce Department found that the home ownership rate for those under age 35 increased to 35.8 percent in the third quarter of 2015, representing the largest gain for that population since the second quarter of 2004.

Read more: Millennials Say They Don’t Want a Home Like Their Parents’

These stats demonstrate why it’s important for baby boomers looking to sell to consider the needs of young buyers when undertaking remodeling projects. The main thing to keep in mind: most young buyers are not looking to take on a fixer-upper.

“For the most part, Millennials are looking for the finished product and will pay for it. They want what they see in magazines — nothing less,” says Sabine H. Schoenberg, president of the real estate brokerage firm PrimeSitesCT in Greenwich, Conn. “They don’t seem to view themselves living in any one place for a very long time, so there’s no time for gradually rolled out home improvements.”

These are three upgrades that millennial buyers expect:

Open space to congregate. Young buyers are drawn to open floor plans, and in particular they want kitchens and family rooms that are open and connected, with plenty of room for people to hang out. “As a real estate broker, I frequently hear statements from millennial buyers like: “I don’t want to be in separate parts of the house and never see my family,” says Schoenberg. Owners may want to consider adding a center island with a few stools to the kitchen, to emphasize the room as a prime entertaining space.

WiFi is key. The lack of a strong wireless internet connection is not just a deal killer in high-rises and condos in urban areas. If your house suffers from spotty wireless service, you may need to install WiFi boosters. However, if the cell signal in your home is strong, you’ll definitely want to mention that to young prospects.

Think green. Young buyers generally prefer wood floors to carpet, so focus on upgrading to eco-friendly materials such as bamboo flooring and wood with FSC (Forestry Stewardship Certification). They’re also looking for healthy homes with good air quality, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, and most importantly, no environmental issues like mold and fungus, and non-toxic paint that contains low or zero VOC.

Source: “How Boomers Can Sell Their Homes to MillennialsFirst-time buyers

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