3 features Americans want in their dream home

Most Americans have a clear idea of their dream home — and it doesn’t involve living large.

Fewer people think owning their own home is part of the “American Dream” in 2015 than they did five years ago (71% in 2015 versus 77% in 2010), according to a survey of 2,000 adults carried out by Harris Poll on behalf of real estate site Trulia. Homeownership has become as much of a lifestyle choice than an obligatory milestone, says Selma Hepp, chief economist with Trulia; 75% of married people with kids under the age of 18 say they plan to buy a home to be their primary residence versus 69% of single people with no kids.


Yet only 35% of Americans said they’ve already purchased their “dream home.” Only 14% of respondents who plan to buy any home say they will do so within the next year, the survey found, while 69% plan to wait at least two years. And most people gravitate toward modern homes (18%) with newer features that require less work than older homes, followed by ranch-style homes (15%). People chose a dozen types of homes from log cabins (6%) to Colonial style houses (5%). Only 3% chose penthouse apartments as their ideal type of home and 1% picked houseboats.

Here are the three most popular features people want to live in a home happily ever after:

Americans aren’t big fans of mansions like the kind favored by 50 Cent. In fact, they’re more likely to follow the lead of billionaire investor Warren Buffett and Facebook FB, -0.03% co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, whose primary residences are suburban homes fit for a middle class family rather than members of the 1%. In fact, 44% of respondents want an average-sized home between 1,401 and 2,600 square feet — choosing a home that is not too big or too small.
When describing where their dream home is located, most respondents are evenly split between wanting to live in the countryside (27%) and the suburbs (27%) rather than in the heart of a major American city (8%). And this varies, depending on where in the country the respondents were located. Midwesterners and those living in the northeast prefer the suburbs, southerners want to live in the countryside and Westerners were more likely to say they want to live in the mountains.


But most Americans are less modest when it comes to the amenities they desire in their dream home: 59% say they want a backyard deck. Other features they want in their dream home include a balcony with a view (45%), gourmet kitchen (47%), vegetable garden (40%), open floor plan (38%) and swimming pool (38%). “Most people want a mid-sized, modern home in the suburbs with a backyard deck,” Hepp says. “Americans are pretty realistic and practical when it comes to what they want in their dream home.”

Source: Market Watch By QUENTIN FOTTRELL PERSONAL FINANCE

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