What A New Study Can Tell You About A Home Buyer's Wish List

Home Stager with www.rethinkhomeinteriors.com
A dated bathroom needed paint and new accessories to update beautifully.

A dated bathroom just needed paint and new accessories to feel completely updated.

How cool would it be to get into the minds of you buyers before you ever list your house?

What do they really want?

What should you highlight in your online listing photos and description? ( I recently wrote about what buyer’s spend the most time looking at in an online listing here)

What an advantage you would be at armed with this kind of buyer insight!  The best part is you can learn this easily and you don’t even need to consult a crystal ball–sorry Madame Zelda.

The National Association of Realtors just released a new study The 2013 NAR Profile of Buyers’ Home Feature Preferences that reveals some great new information about what today’s home buyers want in a house and what they are willing to pay to have them.  While the study is to better help Realtors align their client’s wishes with current inventory, it is also a great tool for home sellers too.  If you are an investor, it may also help you to make a smarter purchase and inform the kinds of rehab decisions you make knowing what today’s buyers want.

Here are some key findings from the survey of just over 2,000 households who bought homes from 2011-2012:

Key findings of the survey include:

  • Nearly 80% of those surveyed purchased a home with a garage.
  • Hardwood floors were among the top amenities sought after by Northeastern buyers.
  • Central air conditioning was the most important to the most buyers (65%) followed by a walk-in closet in the master bedroom (39%).
  • 69% of buyers who did not purchase a home with central AC would be willing to pay $2,520 more for a home with this feature!
  • The rooms that buyers were willing to pay the most for were a basement, an in-law suite and laundry room.
  • Buyers aged 55 and older placed more importance on a bedroom on the main level of the house.
  • The most common home improvement project was remodeling the kitchen, followed by bathrooms with 47% and 44% of buyers, respectively, upgrading those rooms.
  • Buyers placed the highest dollar value on waterfront properties and homes that were less than five years old.

So what does this mean for you if your house doesn’t have some or any of these features?


Great question!  You need to seriously consider investing in Staging or solid design choices if you are rehabbing.  I have worked in houses with no basement, no central air, no driveway never-mind a garage, outdated kitchens and baths and they have all had offers within the first month on the market.  And the reason for that is, that when you create a house that pulls at your buyer’s emotions, the buyer begins to be more flexible on those kinds of details.  They actually begin to forgive the house for it’s limitations and focus more on its positives.  Watch an episode of House Hunters on HGTV and you see this happen all the time.  The moral?  Don’t get discouraged that your house might not sell.  Do everything you can to make your house irresistible in it’s design and organization to grab your buyer’s attention to all of the positives of your property and minimize the negatives.

If you need help selling your house faster with Staging or want to make smart design decisions for your flip, email me today–I’d love to help you!

Posted by


lori fischer


Rethink Home Interiors                                                

Moving can be stressful.  If you live in the Philadelphia Suburbs and need to get organized to sell, let Home Staging expert and Moving Concierge, Lori Fischer of Rethink Home Interiors help you get your project started + give you peace of mind.                                                                    

www.rethinkhomeinteriors.com                                                               lori@rethinkhomeinteriors.com                                                                  610.724.1108

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Comments (1)

Beverly Carlson
Carlson Properties 325-721-2429 - Abilene, TX
Abilene's Staging Realtor
Lori, love your encouragement to home sellers. It is so true, houses have good features even when they are missing a current buyer must have. Staging is like makeup for the face. You just look better with some makeup and staged homes just look better,
Jun 05, 2013 10:48 AM