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5 millennial home renovation trends

A new Houzz survey finds that millennials aren’t only buying homes, they’re customizing them for a one-of-a-kind feel. Here, we highlight what they are busy doing.

Ever the overachievers, 20- and 30-something home buyers aren’t waiting until midlife to give their home an upgrade — they’re starting right away. Houzz, an online platform for all things home remodeling and design, just released a new survey highlighting the biggest renovation projects their 30 million active users focused on in 2014. Here's what we learned.

One of the survey’s biggest findings is that millennials aren’t willing to pay as much as older generations when it comes to revamping their home. Instead they focus on easy, effective renovations that have a huge impact, like switching up a room’s lighting. According to the survey, 31 percent of homeowners plan on upgrading their lighting in the next six months. Whether it’s replacing an old fixture with something more modern or tweaking the electrical to incorporate a dimmer, this is a project that anyone can tackle.

“The kitchen and bathroom have traditionally been a main focus for renovation, and it’s no different for millennials,” Nino Sitchinava, who is the principal economist at Houzz, tells us. “The big thing they’re upgrading in the kitchen are appliances, cabinets and counter tops,” she says.

One thing you can count on in a millennial’s dream home: lots of outlets. Sitchinava tells us that a past survey, focusing on kitchens and bathrooms, found that millennials are customizing these rooms to have more outlets and laptop charging stations. It makes sense, if you’re reading a recipe on your tablet, an extra outlet in the kitchen would come in handy since appliances often take up the ones already there.

Another renovation that transforms a home but isn’t crazy expensive is doing a little yard work. “Upgrading the lawn makes up 20 percent of all renovations,” Sitchinava says, adding that creating a pathway is also popular. “It’s something that everyone across all generations is looking at and tackling,” she says. The difference for millennials is that while they aren’t into the idea of hiring a contractor, as older generations tend to do, they are into hiring someone to do the actual dirty work.

“Patio and terrace upgrades make up 23 percent of all home renovations, which is pretty significant,” Sitchinava says. That could include everything from redoing the floorboards to adding a fire pit and they are all things that increase the value on a home.

Follow Emily on Twitter: @EmLaurence

 

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