Surprising Buyer Preferences That Have Changed Over Time

well decorated living room with fireplace

When you’ve been in the same home for quite some time, selling your house to today’s buyers probably means studying buyer preferences that differ somewhat from those that were current the last time. If you check up on the Top Ten lists of features that buyers value, you find that what people say they will pay a premium for does, indeed, change.

You can trace more specific examples of this phenomenon by downloading Top Ten lists from different eras to see how they differ. Here are two such lists, side-by-side, which make for interesting comparisons. The first is from a USA Today list of “Features Buyers Will Pay Extra For” produced in 2013…the second (the column on the right) is last year’s “Top Features Homebuyers are Looking for.” They’re shown in reverse order, least- to most-popular:


  • one or more fireplaces
  • eat-in kitchen
  • home less than 5 years old
  • stainless steel appliances
  • ensuite master bath
  • hardwood floors
  • granite countertops
  • walk-in closet in master bedroom
  • new kitchen appliances
  • central air conditioner


  • ( only listed 9)
  • separate laundry room
  • lots of windows and light
  • a basement
  • a family room
  • fenced yard
  • eat-in kitchen
  • a garage
  • hardwood floors
  • air conditioning

If you plan on selling your house this year, this presentation is far from the last word on buyer preferences—but the fact that Number One is the only entry that hasn’t changed is interesting. “Eat-in kitchens” remains on the list, but at a higher preference—as is “hardwood floors.” Even if you won’t be selling your own house right away, if you are thinking that might be somewhere on the horizon, for more information on our current buyer preferences, please don’t hesitate to give me a call!