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What Luxury Homes will look like for Millennials

What will luxury homes look like for Millennials? For the future generation of homeowners, sustainable luxury, innovation, and energetic design will be the new signal of affluence.

That doesn’t mean that there won’t still be incredible class, timelessness, and luxury involved in the design process.

From luxurious penthouse apartments to 10,000-square-foot “humble abodes,” Millennials still want all the creature comforts.

So, what will luxury homes look like for Millennials? And what will be trending in luxury home design for this forward-thinking generation?

Millennials want a home that they can grow into — and they’re willing to pay for it.

Because Millennials lived at home for longer, they focused more on career goals, education and likely landed better or equal salaries to their parents.

Which means that even outside of the luxury home market, they’re in a position to skip the starter home entirely and purchase a more expensive home instead.

In fact, 59% per cent of millennials have already achieved their dream of home ownership — at least, that’s according to a survey facilitated in May 2018 by Canadian mortgage insurer Genworth Canada.

Keep in mind that’s high, according to Statistics Canada — who only reported a rate of home ownership of 43.6 per cent for 20-34-year old’s in 2016.

However, the Genworth data proves that Millennials are going to be buying and building homes in the future one way or another. The proof is in the pudding: over the next two years, 30 per cent of millennials plan on making their first home purchase.

Home amenities and community are important to Millennials and Generation Z

As the saying in real estate goes, “location, location, location”.

The up-and-coming homeowner generation is tech-driven but integrated with social channels in a way that considers their environment and community — as a priority.

Millennials want their luxury homes to have a new, clean, and modern design, but are less concerned about aesthetic and more interested in convenience, community, function, and amenities.

Homes that have walkability, are near restaurants and shops or have a few feature things to do in the area are all important facets of consideration for the Millennial homeowner.

For those who are looking to put roots down, close proximity to parks, schools, community centers, and other kid-friendly services make for attractive living features to families.

Space is still at a premium

With the Millennial generation entering into the Boomer home market, they’re looking at properties with an average house price of about $500,000 and around 2,500 square feet — for the most part in Toronto real estate.

For luxury residences, that square footage will only continue to grow.

It’s true that Millennials care about the environment, having a mindful carbon footprint and are well-acquainted with the TLC “Tiny House” and “nomadic” lifestyle trend.

However, for those that can afford it, they want maximum space optimized to their surroundings —and with a minimalistic design.

Millennial luxury homes will also need to be large enough for entertaining.

Inside there may be the main kitchen, as well as a second kitchenette to make dinner parties less cluttered.

Many home builders and architects can also build out extended butler’s pantries or add additional sculleries that provide more storage and cooking space.

Millennials want to experience a seamless transition between the indoors and outdoors

Perhaps influenced by their “Flower Child” parents, Millennials have always displayed a sense of altruism towards their environments.

They also grew up in a period of time where they can easily remember life before technology, and life after — in vivid colour.

Not unlike their parents’ childhoods, Millennials can easily remember playing outdoors often and with neighborhood friends.

Further, with tech start-ups like Tesla and Apple becoming remarkable testaments to the digital transformation era, it makes sense why this generation cohort wants to bring a sense of holism and simplicity into their homes.

To incorporate nature in a luxurious way, builders and architects are adding contemporary features with accordion-style glass doors, as well as waist-high folding glass windows over kitchen counters, to blur the lines between inside and out.

In some ways, it makes sense why this “Instagram-reel-worthy” inspired generation has an eye for contemporary luxury home design — one that keeps eco-friendly sustainability features in mind.

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How Millennials are influencing custom home building

In the custom home building industry, it’s important to be at the leading edge of innovation and design trends. Quite simply, to meet the demands of constantly evolving lifestyles.

The newest home buyers on the horizon are Millennials. Since they don’t have the same lifestyle of their Baby Boomer parents, they have different home design tastes and preferences.

Many Millennials are focused on functional design. Think low maintenance, energy-efficiency, environment-friendly materials and beyond.

The good news is, Millennials plan to own a home within the next five years

Millennials are having a surprising effect on custom home building and in 2018 alone Millennials made up half of Canada’s first-time home buyers.

In fact, the cross-Canada survey conducted by Leger found that 87 per cent of Canadians aged 25 to 30 believe homeownership is a good investment. More so, 69 per cent hope to own a home in the next five years.

This home buying generation has unique requests.

Millennials care more about function than square footage

Convenience and connectedness are the new square footage to the Millennial generation. From technology to neighborhoods, wellness amenities and social networks, Millennials want to build their home where they can feel connected and part of a community. To this generation, a new home represents an opportunity to connect and socialize with friends and family.

Many Millennials opt for urban city dwellings over the sprawling suburbs for their first home. As the saying goes, Millennials want to “be where the action is”. At this stage, they don’t want “too much house” since it requires more upkeep than they want to do.

Less house to maintain means more time for the social scene.

Some Millennials also perceive smaller homes to be less demanding on the environment. Further, Millennials want design elements and home construction materials that have been ethically sourced and are eventually biodegradable, recyclable, or good for the environment.

Smart homes infused with technology

Having a SMART home is also important to this high-tech generation. Jill Waage, an editorial director at Better Homes and Gardens, said during a presentation at the 2015 International Builders’ Show, “Our research shows that women 35 and under see value in owning a home and their attitudes toward making space livable through smart technology and integrated design are significantly stronger than those of their older cohorts. The next generation of homeowners will lead the way in adopting new technology — making features like the ability to preheat an oven or unlock the front door from a smartphone the new norm in home convenience.” 

More and more homes being equipped to support SMART home technology. It’s a no-brainer that this technology needs to be supported starting with the new home construction process. From properly wiring the electrical throughout the house and insuring WiFi connectivity is strong and consistent from room to room.

Multifunctional spaces to maximize on space

Millennials care about minimalism and maximizing space for functionality with clever design.

Top of the list for design strategies includes capturing and creating opportunities for sunlight from various areas in the home.

As well, fluid and open floor plans, lots of windows, half-wall dividers and translucent or clear glass-paneled doors that allow light to travel more deeply into the interior of a home are desired.

Light naturally expands smaller spaces which makes this a great design strategy to make the space look larger than it actually is.

Flexible space is key

Aside from adding light to a room, multifunctional spaces that are flexible in their use are key.

Incorporating movable elements such as doors on tracks rather than swinging open, and cabinetry or storage on wheels are all ways to be more space-efficient.

With Millennials choosing smaller spaces, they’re able to indulge in high-quality finishes and interesting features in their home. For example, even with less square footage, they’ll opt for a eucalyptus-infused steam shower with rainforest shower heads.

In this article by New Home Source, it’s surprising to learn what the most desired features are that Millennials want in a home.

Turns out, features related to energy efficiency topped their list of interests. A separate laundry room was also on the most-wanted list, with 55 per cent saying they wouldn’t buy a new home without one. Believe it or not, exterior lighting came in second, with 88 per cent saying it was essential or desirable. Storage also made the top 10 list, with linen closets, a walk-in pantry and garage storage also being important.

The least likely features Millennials claimed to care about? Outdoor kitchens with plumbing and appliances and two-story foyers and living rooms. However, entertaining outdoors is important to Millennials and living room like settings are key. But anything beyond having a barbecue for grilling hasn’t really been deemed as necessary.

Regardless, your custom home or renovation should represent your personal style. And reflect who you are and what you want the space to embody. Millennials are proving to have unique tastes which makes for an exciting future in home building and design.