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More Than Shelter: What People Want in Their Next Home

You’ve been staying at home for many weeks—unless you’re one of the countless heroes in healthcare, public safety or at the grocery stores, pharmacies and other essential businesses that remain available to people during the COVID-19 shutdown. While you’ve experienced so much time in the confines of your home, you’ve likely identified ways your home provides more than just shelter. At Epcon Communities, we’ve heard from a lot of buyers who have had enough of a home that doesn’t fit their lifestyle. And we’re learning what people want in their next home.

Size Matters

How cozy are you with everyone at home, pretty much 24/7? Are you craving privacy? Is the noise starting to get to you? How about the clutter—particularly now that you have an excess of supplies stockpiled with nowhere to keep them?

You hear a lot about down-sizing, but it’s more about right-sizing. Go big, go small, but go somewhere to find a home that actually fits the way you want to live. Sure, the kids or grandkids will go back to school eventually, but if we’ve learned nothing else from this experience, we know that the unthinkable is now thinkable. So, how much space (and what kind) do you need to handle everyone’s needs?

Wide Open Spaces

You’re probably thankful for making the choice of an open floorplan when you did. When everyone congregates in the kitchen, it doesn’t feel so cramped because the space is open. But is that area large enough? 

If you feel like taking a sledgehammer to the walls in your home, the answer is probably “no”.

If you’re looking out over your open concept and seeing the disarray of scattered homework and backpacks, and notice the dog is lying on your work files which you left on the sofa, then you probably need more space—either a larger main living area or more rooms.

Square footage aside, Realtors and builders alike expect that home buyers will be looking for a right-sized space.

Just One More Room

Gone are the days when an extra room is a luxury. A home office, a separate family room, and a guest bedroom have become must-haves for the home buyer in 2020 and beyond. While togetherness is a wonderful thing, we all need a break. Whether you’re trying to focus on working productively, need a hobby or fitness space of your own or desperately yearn for a quiet room to hide from the daily activity, you’ll want a flex room in your next home. 

A mudroom is also a nice feature, providing a drop zone that works as a clutter filter for your home.

Coveted in the Kitchen

Does your kitchen have sufficient workspace and storage? Home buyers have always placed emphasis on the kitchen. It’s the heart of the home. But now they’re looking for one that has a smarter design, more workspace and storage and with the latest appliances and style. They need a walk-in pantry that can accommodate something as large as, say, a 20-roll package of paper towels.

More Generations Under One Roof

Another trend we’re likely to see as a result of the pandemic is an increase in multigenerational households. Aging parents might move in with their adult children, seeking a more comfortable and potentially safer environment. Or there might be room needed for a full-time caregiver for a family member.

On the other end of the generational spectrum, some empty-nesters will be welcoming back their grown kids. These adults have been impacted by the financial strain of losing their jobs during the shutdown. 

In any of these situations, you’ll need more than an extra bedroom. A second or bonus suite is desirable, so that these adults can continue to enjoy the independence they need. Look for a floor plan that either includes or has the option of a second suite.

Let There Be Light…Please!

One more aspect home buyers will prioritize in their new home search is an abundance of natural light. Large and plentiful windows that stream daylight will present a desirable feature. There’s nothing like the sunshine vitamin to perk up a space and all its inhabitants.

More Outdoor Living

People are social animals. Many do not thrive when confined indoors. An outdoor living space, therefore, is going to matter to many home buyers. Not everyone will be looking for a big yard that requires maintenance. They simply want to be able to relax outside and enjoy fresh air.

The Epcon Solution

At Epcon Communities, we subscribe to the notion that we should all live well every day. Long before this health crisis shifted priorities, we were designing homes that cater to the diverse needs of today’s families. Our spacious floorplans feature beautifully designed spaces, with contemporary kitchens and luxurious owner’s suites. Our courtyard design provides a private outdoor oasis.

Epcon Communities are also designed with convenience. The low-maintenance lifestyle here allows residents freedom from exterior home care. They have more time to enjoy the community amenities and activities that bring people together. As you reconsider the way you want to live, explore our communities around the country. Get in touch to start living life your way.