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Upgrades Among Pandemic Buyer Must Haves

Real Estate Agent with Monument Sotheby's International Realty

The Pandemic has undeniably changed the real estate market in ways that no one anticipated affecting buyer preferences. With so many working from home and learning virtually in various combinations, the obvious result has been buyers wanting larger homes with spaces to accommodate the flexibility needed for that functionality. The popularity of open floor plans has shifted somewhat to more specific living, working, and learning spaces.


Interestingly, due to more time being spent at home, buyers are looking for luxuriously appointed areas of the home, kitchens and baths in particular. First, buyers seek the upgrades to make their lives more comfortable and spending more time at home more enjoyable. An interesting revelation with kitchens, though, is that not only the more traditional focus of serious gourmets of upgraded offerings in the kitchen is in the “buyer wish list mix”, but many buyers have become increasingly interested in cooking as a result of being home pushing kitchen upgrades to the top of their list. 

Features that are in demand typically commanding sales price premiums:

-New appliances, always desirable, but even more so now, being one of the top features contributing to sales price premiums.

-Quartz counters in kitchens and baths are highly requested by buyers

-Smart appliances

-Pizza ovens and steam ovens are in demand by serious cooks

-Curbless showers in baths are highly desirable

-With many people adding a pet to their home this past year, doghouses and doggie baths are features new pet owners and pet lovers will love

- Fenced yards are important to dog owners, buyers with children


Modern Farmhouse style is still very popular with buyers, creating an updated and clean on trend look that many buyers gravitate to. Homes that are being sold needing ”TLC” will typically see hits on pricing. Sellers should take into consideration that many buyers don’t want to take on projects. More important to consider currently, building material availability is limited, with costs increasing substantially, making it hard for buyers to commit to changes and upgrades that are major.


It’s important to note that having these features and the actual effect on pricing is in the eyes of the buyer pool at the moment. Some may pay premiums for certain things that impact their lifestyle positively specifically – and some may not see the value for themselves. It’s always good to know what generally are considered to be positives for buyers – and what are not. As an agent, I can help sellers with information tailored to their community, local market and their home, and what I hear in the marketplace.

Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

It is true, buyers flooded back to the housing market, pushing prices up and buying fast. And most of them do prefer ''ready to move in'' & ''homey'' spaces. 

Nov 11, 2021 08:51 PM