Property preferences: Millennials vs Baby Boomers

by Housesimple on 5th May 2018

Understanding your audience is key to hosting a successful viewing, and is particularly useful if you’re looking for a quick property sale. Fortunately, there are some generational differences in tastes that can help give you a handle on what your buyers might be looking for. So let’s break it down…

Location

For a good number of Millennials, it's all about location. They have a strong desire to be close to their workplace and the amenities they love. This translates into a willingness to pay extra for the privilege. Baby Boomers, meanwhile, still rule the roost in rural areas.

When it comes to advertising, you can appeal to these tastes by tailoring your property description. Emphasise the local amenities and activities for the city slickers, and the gardens, parks and open spaces for their pastoral parents.

History

Millennials are usually typecast as future-facing technophiles, while Baby Boomers are seen as more traditional. But does that hold for architectural tastes? In a word, yes. A poll conducted by market research company Comres found that 57% of 18 to 34s are more comfortable in new buildings than old ones. That compares to just 32% of over 55s.

But what if you're targeting Millennials with an older building? Clean, minimal spaces supplemented with smart tech should maximise appeal. At the other end of the spectrum, you can help Baby Boomers warm towards newer properties with some well-placed antique furniture and a few homely decorations here and there.

Space

For Millennials, space can be less important than being at the heart of the action. In contrast, many Baby Boomers still see their home as their castle and will pay for the added space. It’s no coincidence that four-bed properties are the most popular purchase with this age group (even when they’re downsizing).

With a greater preference for working at home, over 55s are also more likely to look out for useful extras like home offices. As for Millennials, one study found that a whopping 78% favour open-plan spaces over multiple rooms.

Décor

A recent poll of generational design preferences revealed reassuringly familiar results. While Millennials favour modern, minimal and mid-century design, Baby Boomers tend toward a "refined rustic" approach that blends classic forms with an informal, homespun style.

In both cases, you’re unlikely to offend with décor that’s centred on well-made solid wood furnishings and pastel colours. So don’t rule out that country kitchen redesign yet.