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How Americans Are Feeling About Homebuying & Renovations Today

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It seems like everyone’s talking about buying a new home or renovating. If you’re trying to decide if it’s the right time for you, knowing what others are considering might help you take that leap.

So Marcus reached out to over 1,800 Americans who were in the market for a home or a renovation project to learn more about their priorities and decision-making process. Read on to see what we found!

Why buy a home now?

Timing is everything, isn’t it? Perhaps never more so than when buying a home. Of those surveyed, 616 of respondents are looking to purchase a home in the next six months. And within that group, 49% decided “now” because they needed more space, with 37% making the decision because of a life event, such as a growing family or moving to a new location.

Beyond this, 32% of those looking to buy a home in the next six months are planning to because they’re afraid of continuing rising prices, 26% because they have more money to spend (a problem we’d all love to have), and 17% need a new place to accommodate working from home.

Of those Americans looking to purchase a primary residence in the next six months, 55% of Millennials stated their reasoning was because they needed more space, compared to only 52% of Gen X and 34% of Baby Boomers.

Based on our survey, 437 respondents are currently renovating or plan to renovate in the next six months.

Why renovate now?

Home renovations can require a fair amount of planning and decision-making. And some can be pretty major ventures that require serious life reshuffling. We’re curious: Why did folks make the leap?

Based on our survey, 437 of respondent are planning to renovate in the next six months, and 37% are currently renovating (or plan to) as a result of spending more time at home during the pandemic. (It’s easy to find something to update when you’re staring at the same four walls, right?)

And 34% of respondents currently renovating or planning to renovate in the next six months said having extra money saved helped jumpstart their reno. Other reasons for renovating include fixing a safety issue (28%) and renovating in order to prep a house for sale (20%).

Which areas of their home are Americans renovating?

Deciding which area of your home to renovate (or which area to start with) can be time-consuming on its own.

And in the case of our survey, it tended to boil down to two reasons: Either a particular space really needs it (like that 60s floral wallpaper that’s giving you migraines), or renovating a certain space will get you better returns when you’re ready to sell.

Whatever the reason, kitchens were one of the most popular spaces to renovate with 55% of respondents currently renovating or who plan to renovate in the next six months doing kitchen renovations.

The second most popular project was bathrooms, with 52% of those currently renovating or who plan to renovate in the next six months saying they will renovate (or currently are renovating) a bathroom.

In addition to kitchens and bathrooms, of those currently renovating or planning to renovate in the next six months, 41% of respondents are renovating bedrooms and 27% are renovating renovate outdoor areas.

According to our survey, 392 respondents stated they’d go to social media for home renovation inspiration.

Social media and home reno inspiration

When it comes to looking for home reno inspiration, few sources scratch that itch quite like social media. There’s a seemingly infinite amount of design ideas at our fingertips and it looks like folks are taking full advantage. 

According to our survey, 392 respondents stated they’d go to social media for home renovation inspiration/advice.

Of that group, Pinterest came out as the top social media platform for ideas, with 66% of those 392 turning to the site.

YouTube is a close second at 65% − because who doesn’t love a good post-renovation home walkthrough video?

Folks are also hopping on Facebook (57%), Instagram (44%), Twitter (21%) and TikTok (18%) for fresh design inspo.

When more is more…we’re talking home additions

Some home dwellers aren’t just tinkering with the space they already have – we’re also seeing practical additions being made to homes.

Of the 437 respondents currently renovating or planning to renovate in the next six months, 22% of respondents plan to add outdoor areas and 14% plan to add a home office. 

Considering some reasons for updating their spaces, of those same 437 respondents currently or planning to renovate, 44% said the pandemic led them to plan to renovate.

Additional survey insights

Marcus by Goldman Sachs conducted a survey of 1,883 Americans who were either homeowners or looking to purchase a home to reveal their priorities and sentiment toward homebuying and renovations. Of this population, we looked at homeowners, homeowners looking to renovate and those Americans looking to purchase a home in the next six months.

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for individualized professional advice. Articles on this site were commissioned and approved by Marcus by Goldman Sachs®, but may not reflect the institutional opinions of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., Goldman Sachs Bank USA or any of their affiliates, subsidiaries or divisions.