Buyers have a long list of what they want when home shopping, but one of their biggest desires: A good deal.
"And no matter where a seller prices their property, they're looking to negotiate," says Patricia Szot, president of the MetroTex Association of REALTORS®.
But that’s not all they want. Bankrate.com recently asked real estate professionals to chime in on the top desires of their buyers when home shopping. Here are four things that made the list of top home buyer preferences:
1. Homes that are in good condition. "There's not a lot of flexibility in that," says Ron Phipps, president of the National Association of REALTORS®. Many buyers now take the attitude: "I'd rather spend the money getting into the house" and not have to spend more money later, Phipps says. One of the major reasons is that "buyers have limited amounts of cash," he adds. "Even if they want to do a fixer-upper, they don't have the money to do it."
2. A bargain with incentives. Buyers are looking for a good deal, even when considering bank-owned properties, says Joan Pratt, real estate broker with RE/MAX Professionals in Castle Pines, Colo. "They want the short sales and the foreclosures and they want them to look like they're owner-occupied," she says. "They don't want to paint. They don't want to put carpet in. They don't want to clean."
And they aren’t only asking for a low price but they also want incentives to buy too. As such, sellers are offering everything from gift cards for new furniture to paint to financial assistance at closing.
3. Outdoor living areas. Homes with screen porches, outdoor kitchens, two-way fireplaces are becoming increasingly competitive in the marketplace as more buyers say they want more outdoor living space.
4. Open kitchens. "The wall between the kitchen and the family room is evaporating," Phipps says. "The kitchen is becoming part of the gathering space.” (See Buyers Want Cozy, Connected Kitchens)
Source: “9 Items Homebuyers Desire in 2011,” Bankrate.com (March 2011)