Buyers Have Diverse Preferences for the Home’s Exterior Design


A new question introduced to the 2021 Edition of What Home Buyers Really Want* showed buyers pictures and descriptions of four exterior designs and asked for their preference. Results reveal that buyers have quite diverse preferences for the exterior style of their home, since none of the choices was preferred by anywhere near a majority of buyers.

At best, a traditional home (rooted in historic styles) was the preferred exterior design of 32% of home buyers, followed by a contemporary home (clean lines, sloped roofs, expansive windows) at 24%, a transitional home (contemporary design with traditional cues) at 16%, and finally a modern home (bold, boxy, flat roofs) at 14%.

Further geographic analysis confirms that none of the four exterior designs commands the preference of a majority of buyers in any of the nine Census divisions. At best, a traditional home is the first choice of a plurality of buyers (30% to 45%) in 8 of the 9 divisions. The only exception is the Pacific division, where a contemporary design is the first preference of the plurality of buyers (29%).

* What Home Buyers Really Want, 2021 Edition sheds light on the housing preferences of the typical home buyer, but also on how those preferences change over time, and how they may vary based on demographic factors such as age, income, and geography. The study is based on a comprehensive, nationwide survey of 3,247 recent and prospective home buyers conducted in the summer of 2020. For a complete article summarizing the most important findings, please click here.

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2 replies

  1. I’m looking for design of ADU
    800 sf or less.
    Please send me pics of what you have?

  2. Well, that’s a relatable analysis. With the evolving demand and supply dynamics in the real estate market, diverse preferences are common.

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