Whether you’re a die-hard for walk-in closets or an inground pool is at the top of your priority list, everyone has a favorite home feature that they go crazy for.
Realtor.com recently published their findings on the home features American buyers from each state consider to be must-haves in a new property. Analyzing home keyword search data from April to December 2019, the real estate listings website produced a list of 20 features per state, narrowing the list down to the most-searched term in the territory.
Location, recreation and lifestyle factors played a large role in which features American home shoppers had their hearts set on.
“While some of the country’s most-loved home features, such as accessory dwelling units or lakefront properties, will likely fetch a premium on the open market, others are more matters of the heart,” says George Ratiu, senior economist at Realtor.com, in the report. “Maybe you grew up in a certain style of home or have always dreamed of having a big yard — everyone’s vision of home is unique and being able to search for what makes a house perfect for you can help you find true love in a new home.”
In sunny California, buyers were keen on solar panels. The addition of solar panels is not only a clean-energy approach to living and a means of reducing utility bills, but in California specifically, the inclusion of panels is now mandatory. As of 2020, all new homes in California are required by law to install solar panels, making it the first state in the country to do so. California has been leading the charge on the inclusion of solar panels for years now, with Realtor.com reporting in 2018 that seven of the top 10 markets with the highest concentration of listing with solar panels existed in the West Coast state.
The popularity of secondary housing units isn’t slowing down. Search words for in-law apartments, barns, ADUs (accessory dwelling units) and RV parking ranked high on the list of most-loved features. If you’ve got the space, the addition of another small building can make for a perfect granny pod, or private place to house guests or in-laws. Buyers in 13 states, including Arizona, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Texas, loved ADUs.
With rickety knees, climbing the stairs can be a pain in old age. As many American Baby Boomers are now hitting retirement age, they’re saying ‘bye-bye’ to multi-level homes. Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio and six other states saw high volumes of search words for ranch, rambler and single-level homes.
The home itself doesn’t take all of the glory when it comes to home shopping — location plays a crucial role too. For Florida, Missouri, Tennessee and West Virginia buyers, a home with a stunning view was among their must-haves. They also searched for water-related features, including lake views, canals, docks and river access. Some buyers weren’t fussed about a home’s location, but rather its appearance. Texans sought modern homes, while home shoppers in South Carolina cared more about traditional brick facades.