If there’s one thing that’s clear in this crazy year, it’s that a home just being a home isn’t enough anymore. In many cases, a home is now also an office, a school, a fitness center, and much, much more.
And that’s leading to a lot of people thinking much differently about what they need from their home than they used to.
Case in point: a new report from the California Association of Realtors shows that what California homebuyers are looking for in a home changed this year, with more people looking for a larger home and fewer people being concerned about their commute time to work.
According to the CAR report, nearly 44% of Realtors say they saw a change in buyers’ preferences of what they want in a home over the last nine months.
The #1 thing that buyers are looking for now is a bigger home compared to what they either have now or what they were previously looking at. California buyers now also want homes with more rooms.
According to the report, 37% of the California Realtors surveyed said that buyers are less worried about their travel time to work than they used to be. Many California buyers are also looking to move from a city to a suburb, an indication that work from home may be here to stay for many people.
The report also shows that more California buyers are buying vacation or second homes. In fact, buying a vacation home in California hasn’t been this popular in four years.
“The flexibility to work from home and the desire to move from metropolitan areas motivated homebuyers to relocate to resort communities in search of more space and a healthier lifestyle,” CAR said in its report.
Beyond wanting different things in a home than they have in the past, Californians also want to buy a home more than they have in the past as well. According to the CAR report, the average number of offers on a home reached the highest level in seven years.
In 2020, just over 59% of homes on the market in California saw multiple offers, with an average of 4.8 offers per home. That’s up from 2019’s totals of 47.7% of homes receiving multiple offers, with an average of 3.9 offers on each home.
In another sign that competitiveness was on the rise this year, more than a third of California homebuyers paid more than the asking price for their home in 2020, up from 26.7% in 2019.
As a result of the increased competition for homes, sellers saw an average profit on their home sale of $210,000 in 2020, an average of 63.8% over their purchase price.
And given the predictions for the housing market in 2021 and how people’s view of what they need in a home are changing, things aren’t likely to slow down in California any time soon.