Significant Shift in Interest for Newly-Built Homes

According to NAHB’s latest Housing Trends Report, 15% of adults were considering a home purchase in the fourth quarter of 2020, up from 11% a year earlier. Further analysis reveals a significant shift in interest for newly-built homes during this period among prospective buyers.

In the final quarter of 2020, 41% of buyers were looking for a newly-built home, more than twice the 19% share a year earlier. On the other hand, the share interested in an existing home declined from 40% to 30%, while the share indifferent to either type of home fell from 41% to 29%.

When broken down by generation, results show that 50% of Millennial and 48% of Gen X buyers are looking to buy a new home. In contrast, 50% of Boomers and 38% of Gen Z buyers would prefer to buy an existing home. Across regions, a majority of buyers in the Northeast (53%) and West (51%) would prefer a new home, far larger shares than in the South (33%) or the Midwest (24%). In fact, in the Midwest, a strong 46% plurality would prefer an existing home.

* The Housing Trends Report is a research product created by the NAHB Economics team with the goal of measuring prospective home buyers’ perceptions about the availability and affordability of homes for-sale in their markets. The HTR is produced quarterly to track changes in buyers’ perceptions over time. All data are derived from national polls of representative samples of American adults conducted for NAHB by Morning Consult. Results are not seasonally adjusted due to the short-time horizon of the series, and therefore only year-over-year comparisons are statistically valid. A description of the poll’s methodology and sample characteristics can be found here.  This is the second in a series of six posts highlighting results for the fourth quarter of 2020. See previous posts on plans to buy.

This post brought to you by NAHB Eye on Housing.