1. MOST ARE MARRIED. Forty nine percent are a married couple. Single females comprise 25 percent of first-time buyers, and single males account for just 12 percent.
2. THEY'RE YOUNG. More than half- 53 percent are between the ages of 24 and 34. And 12 percent are younger than 24.
3. THEY'RE DIVERSE. Twenty-two percent are part of a minority group, compared with 13 percent of repeat buyers. Six percent speak a language other than English, and 12 percent were not born in the United States.
4. THEY LIKE THE 'BURBS. Even though 22 percent purchase in an urban area, the suburbs continue to be the most popular locale, with 52 percent buying there. The third most popular spot is a small town.
5. THEY TAKE THEIR TIME. First-time buyers take an average of 12 weeks to find their home, compared with 10 weeks for repeat buyers.
6. THEY ARE NOT AFRAID OF FORECLOSURES. Eleven percent of first-timers bought a home in foreclosure, and 56 percent considered it. Only 9 percent of repeat buyers bought a foreclosure, and just 41 percent considered it.
7. THEY'RE MOST LIKELY A REFERRAL. Fifty-three percent found their agent through a referral, compared with 36 percent of repeat buyers, many of whom sought the services of their previous agent.