Last Thursday’s post reported on home buyer preferences for kitchen features, from NAHB’s recent study What Home Buyers Really Want, 2021 Edition. That study also asked the same panel of 3,247 recent and prospective home buyers to rate 18 bathroom features on the same four tier scale:
Results show that bathrooms, especially the home’s primary bathroom, tend to be very important to home buyers. Of the 18 different bathrooms features listed in the survey, 12 received an essential or desirable rating from more than 50 percent of buyers. The four most wanted bathroom features are all specifically features of the home’s primary bath. At the very top of the list, 76 percent of home buyers rated a linen closet in the primary bath as essential or desirable, 74 percent wanted both a shower stall and a tub, 69 percent a double vanity, and 67 percent a private toilet compartment.
The shower and tub combination in the primary bath ranked as the most “essential” feature. Thirty-six percent of buyers rated it specifically as essential—more than any other bathroom feature—meaning that these buyers are unlikely to purchase a home without the feature.
Slightly lower majorities also want the primary bath to have multiple shower heads (59 percent), a whirlpool (56 percent), and a body spray panel (56 percent). Results also indicate that a white toilet, tub, and sink are preferable (65 percent) than their color counterparts (44 percent).
Some bath features are significantly more popular among younger buyers. The leading example is dual toilets in the primary bath, a feature rated essential or desirable by 48 percent of Millennials (born 1980 to 1996) and 50 percent of Gen X (born 1965 to 1979) buyers, but only by 20 percent of the older group of Baby Boomers (born 1946 to 1964). Similarly, while at least half of the younger two generations want to have His & Her baths, a skylight in the primary bath, and a bidet, the share of Boomers interested in these features only ranges from 25 percent to 35 percent. These generational differences are all statistically significant after controlling for a number of other factors, particularly the income and household composition of the buyers.
To see home buyer preferences for other features (including all results broken down by Census division, age, generation, race/ethnicity, income, priced expected to pay for the home, household composition, and first-time vs. repeat buyer) and a complete description of the survey design and sampling methodology, please consult the full study.