The National Association of Realtors 2013 Profile of Buyer's Home Feature Preferences was an interesting one this year.They surveyed people who bought houses from 2010-2012, but I wish I could get a breakdown of where these buyers lived because some of the responses are mind-boggling.
For example, only 65% of buyers cared if the house had Central Air Conditioning. In Texas, that's a must-have! I understand other areas don't get as hot, but I've been watching the news and have seen heatwaves hitting all those Northern areas. How could you continue to live without Central air at those times?
Only 57% of these same buyers bought a house with a Fireplace. Recently, builders in my area have started making the Fireplace an "option" instead of a standard. Many people feel a living room looks odd without that focal point. I think it gives a room more space to arrange your furniture the way you want. While only 65% of buyers wanted central air, it's because those colder places don't need it, but wouldn't you think they would need a fireplace to help keep them warm in the Winter?
I wonder who many people bought a house with no central air AND no fireplace...
We don't have basements in Texas (well, there are a handful throughout because of topography reasons, but less than 1% of houses), it's interesting to see that 41% of buyers did buy a house with a basement. Again, it makes me wonder where these people are who were surveyed and did they just not get enough people from the South to turn theirs in...
But, here's the kicker... The item that had "the highest dollar value buyers were willing to pay more for was having a waterfront property." Makes sense. Waterfront can be a lifestyle people are willing to pay for. How much are they willing to pay? According to this survey, only 32% of buyers would be willing to pay more for the Waterfront, and that amount was an average of $5420. Seriously??!!
$5420 doesn't get you a boat slip on any waterfront property in my area. Waterfront properties go into the Multi-Million range. If you took a house on Lake Austin and put it in the middle of the City of Austin, it would lose more than half its value, my estimate. Waterfront properties are very valuable in Austin. My in-laws live on 2 acres off Lake Travis. Their property, as it currently stands, would probably sell for around $650,000. If you took their house and put it in the city, it wouldn't sell for more than $200-300k depending on the neighborhood it was put in. If it was in one of the suburbs, the price would probably be UNDER $200k.
In the above example, I stated "as it currently stands" because right now their cove is dry from the Central Texas drought. When the cove fills back up, if we could get some rain, it would probably sell for around $1M as it's a double lot at 2 acres. Yes, that's how valuable waterfront is around here.
Here's the link to more stats from NAR's Buyer Profile. Image courtesy of NAR and Realtor.com.
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Copyright© 2013 By Donna Harris, All Rights Reserved. You may re-blog with links back to this post.
* NAR's Profile of a Buyer's Home Feature Wants and Gotta Haves * was first published on donnahomesblog.com.