NAHB provides the most current and accurate information on home buyer preferences to help our members deliver the kind of homes and communities that are most desired by today’s consumers.

In a newly published special study on NAHB’s website, our economists take a close look at key findings from a recently completed, comprehensive association survey called “What Home Buyers Really Want.” Below are some important highlights of what they found.

  • Just over half of all home buyers surveyed said they would like to buy a brand new home –28% directly from a builder and 27% custom built on their own land — while 45% say an existing home is their first preference.
  • Buyers expect to pay about $203,900 for their next home.
  • Buyers want a home with a median of 2,226 square feet, which is about 17% larger than what they have now.
  • Approximately 25% of buyers say the size of the lot is not important when choosing a home.
  • Almost half (47%) want three bedrooms, while 32% want four bedrooms. Most (65%) prefer either 2 or 2.5 bathrooms.
  • Most (57%) prefer a single-story home; 31% prefer two stories.
  • A full or partial basement is something that 66% of buyers say they want.
  • About half (48%) of buyers who want a 2-story home want the master bedroom on the second floor, while 70% prefer to have the washer and dryer on the first floor.
  • Most buyers want a 2-car garage (53%), while 1 out of 5 buyers wants a 3+ car garage.
  • For 65% of buyers, the most influential characteristic when buying a home is “living space and number of rooms that meet their needs.”

When looking at most home components (including flooring, doors, kitchen countertops, cabinets and carpeting), buyers focus most on “quality” and “appearance.” However, when looking for appliances, the focus is primarily on “quality” and “brand name.”

To read the entire report on the study at, click here.