9 Items Homebuyers Desire in 2011 (Part 1)

by The Real Estate Faction on April 21, 2011

Today’s homebuyers want it all.

Some items on the shopping list: a home in great condition with rooms that can do double duty. Areas that mingle indoor and outdoor living — patios, porches, decks and outdoor rooms — are always a plus. And so are those features that offer a little luxury, like garden tubs, first-rate appliances and high-dollar countertops.


They’re also going back to basics: searching for solid, well-maintained properties that will give them their money’s worth.

“I think this year they’re buying properties that are in good mechanical condition that have inherent value,” says Ron Phipps, president of the National Association of Realtors.

But more than anything, buyers want to drive a hard bargain.

They want “great deals,” says Patricia Szot, president of the MetroTex Association of Realtors. “And no matter where a seller prices their property, they’re looking to negotiate.”

Here are nine items popular with buyers this year:

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Homes in Good Condition

Buyers demand homes that are well maintained, Phipps says. “There’s not a lot of flexibility in that.” The attitude is: “I’d rather spend the money getting into the house” and not have to spend more money later, he says. Buyers don’t want an unknown expense hanging over their heads.

Pat Vredevoogd Combs agrees. “I’m not working with too many people who want a fixer-upper,” says Combs, past president of the National Association of Realtors and vice president of Coldwell Banker AJS Schmidt in Grand Rapids, Mich.

One big reason: With most transactions, “buyers have limited amounts of cash,” Phipps says. “Even if they want to do a fixer-upper, they don’t have the money to do it.”

“Buyers have enough money to buy,” he says. “They don’t have enough money to buy and improve. And the lenders make it really difficult.”

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