The millennials are the predominant up and coming generation. They are born between the years 1981 to 1996 with some definitions extending to 2001. Naturally, those who are born earlier in this generation are the ones who are dominating the workforce and the consumer markets. Today, they would be in their mid-thirties. They are unique in such a way that their lifestyles are geared towards having more options and having the flexibility to relocate and follow their careers rather than settling in one location for a single job. Those born later in the generation are still in school and do not really need to look for a permanent home when they pursue higher education. Thus, they tend to choose to rent rather than homeownership.
The Washington real estate market is a magnet for millennials since Washington is home to 6 state universities and over 20 private colleges and universities. It is also the newest techno hub, with tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Facebook making its home in the Seattle and Bellevue areas. Washington is one of the wealthiest states and offers a liberal progressive lifestyle while ranking among the best for life expectancy and low unemployment making it a very attractive neighborhood for millennials.
Millennials consist mostly of young students, young workers or entrepreneurs, and young families. They are a diverse group with different preferences. However, one thing is most certain – millennials want flexibility.
Being less formal than the previous generations who lean more towards structure, millennials prefer open plans that fit a flexible lifestyle. Here are some amenities that they might find attractive:
1. Open plan spaces – open plan space makes it easier for millennials to customize their space according to how they use it. It can be customised for casual entertaining when they have a few guests over, for providing a small family room where small children can play, for providing a crafts room for hobbies or small business crafts, or even creating a space for a small home office for millennials who work from home or run their own businesses.
2. Flexible spaces – millennials love multipurpose things and homes should have at least a space that could serve multiple purposes. For example, a patio or balcony can be used as a place to entertain guests the living room can be converted into a small office space, the kitchen can also be the dining area with the help of fold-out tables and smart shelving.
3. Low maintenance – the reason why millennials and other generations opt for smaller homes and rental properties is because they don’t want to maintain a large house. Baby boomers downsize into smaller homes because it is too much work to maintain a yard or clean three floors worth of floors. Millennials want the ability to run an efficient household with simpler cleaning requirements. They are conscious of waste and would like to save on electricity and water use. Most are trying to reduce carbon footprint and need their homes to be energy efficient.
4. Feel of the neighborhood – as earlier mentioned, Washington is among one of the wealthier neighborhoods in all of the US, with superb access to transportation facilities, travel destinations, unis, and work opportunities. The area of Seattle alone draws in more millennials every year due to the fact that it is home to the largest tech companies in the country. The neighborhood is important to millennials as most of them do not own a car (probably due to environmental concerns) and would to settle into a place where they can commute using public transportation or ride shares easily to work. Some would even prefer walking or biking to the office. Another attractive aspect for millennials is if the property is near stores or entertainment hubs like movie houses.
As a landlord or property manager, you can make your property more attractive to the millennial market by having the following:
● An open plan layout – if you are renting out or selling a condominium, townhome, or single family home, you should consider an open plan layout, at least for the family area (which includes living room, dining room, and kitchen). That way, your prospective tenants or home buyers can customize their own space. Just make sure that the provisions for lighting, electric outlets, sinks, and air conditioning or heating are there. Flexibility in a space is important to millennials, so make sure they can envision using the space for multiple purposes like entertaining, office work, or a side business.
● Smart shelving and storage – most millennials prefer smaller homes, so smart storage is a must. Make sure that there are plenty of storage options and that the shelves are built in unobtrusive places. Secret or hidden storage is a plus so that tenants or home buyers have a place where they can store away their seasonal gear, athletic or sports equipment, kids toys, or seasonal decorations.
● Low maintenance homes – as a landlord, you might want to consider installing tiles or hardwood floors as these are so much easier to clean than carpeted floors, and millennials are always looking for low maintenance easy to manage homes. You might also want to put in a small garden patch along a walkway or at the front (or back) of the property. Millennials are into growing their own food and since they can not plant a garden inside a condominium or apartment, they would appreciate having a small garden in which they could grow their own plants and maybe form a community of gardening enthusiasts. Also, since rental properties are relatively small, a small gym or an entertainment room within the rental compound could be a welcome addition to the usual amenities.
Are you a millennial looking for the perfect rental property with the right amenities? Are you a property owner looking to match with the perfect tenant? At Davis Property Management can match you up with your dream home or the perfect tenant. Take the hassle out of the scouting process by scheduling a consultation with us today!