A property that offers a great outdoor space is taking a higher priority among home buyers. In fact, home shoppers recently surveyed said they would be willing to sacrifice some space from a larger house in order to get a bigger yard.
More than half of 1,000 buyers recently surveyed—or 56 percent—said they’d be willing to sacrifice square footage in a home for a great outdoor space. The survey was conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of Taylor Morrison, a national home builder.
Survey respondents also rated the home’s distance to neighboring homes as the most important exterior feature. Forty-eight percent of millennials and 53 percent of nonmillennials believe the extra buffer is important, even more so than other curb appeal elements like siding, driveway styles, exterior paint colors, and roofing finishes. Women wanted outdoor space more than men (62 percent of women surveyed say they prefer less home square footage for a larger yard, compared to 51 percent of men).
“Demand for more elaborate exterior space continues to rise, and blending indoor-outdoor living to address customer preferences is critical to our success,” says Sheryl Palmer, Taylor Morrison’s CEO. Palmer notes that the findings come at a time when land prices are escalating and local approvals have forced smaller lot sizes.
In response, Taylor Morrison has been ramping up its properties: adding outdoor living rooms, floor-to-ceiling retractable glass walls that open to the backyard, and matching tile flooring that extends from the home’s interior to exterior for a seamless flow to the outdoor space.
Survey respondents were asked what they would spend an extra $10,000 to $15,000 on in their new home. Outdoor living items topped the list, edging out upgraded cabinets and kitchen islands.
“Outdoor living is no longer an afterthought to a home’s construction,” says Charlie Enochs, Taylor Morrison area president for the central region.